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Covid-19: baptized "Omicron", the new variant classified as "worrying" by the WHO

2021-11-26T19:17:37.118Z

Reported to the WHO by South Africa, the B.1.1.529 variant of Covid-19 has been classified as "of concern" by the WHO. It could be more c



It will ultimately not be called “Naked”.

The B.1.1.529 variant of Covid-19, detected for the first time in southern Africa, was classified Friday of "concern" by the World Health Organization (WHO), and named "Omicron".

"This variant has a large number of mutations, some of which are worrying," said in a statement the group of experts tasked by the WHO to follow the evolution of the health crisis.

"The B.1.1.529 variant was first reported to the WHO by South Africa on November 24, 2021," the WHO writes.

"The first known confirmed infection came from a sample taken on November 9, 2021", also reports the organization.

If the Omicron variant is classified as of concern, it is because "preliminary evidence suggests an increased risk of reinfection with this variant" compared to others that exist, already classified as of concern.

"The number of cases of this variant appears to be increasing in almost all provinces of South Africa," reports the WHO.

It will take “several weeks” to understand the level of transmissibility and virulence of the new variant, his spokesperson stressed earlier today.

Fears and border closures

Belgium announced on Friday that it was the first European country to have detected a case. Others have been detected in Hong Kong, Israel on a person returning from Malawi and also in Belgium. Fears related to this new variant, detected at a time when health restrictions are causing social tensions and mistrust of vaccination persists, have caused oil prices to drop and led to sharp drops in world stock markets.

In the wake of Britain, which supplies a large contingent of travelers and tourists to South Africa, several European countries, including France, Italy and the Netherlands, as well as the Philippines, have banned flights from South Africa and neighboring countries in southern Africa.

"Member States have agreed to quickly impose restrictions on all travel to the EU from seven countries in the Southern African region: Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe", European Commission spokesperson Eric Mamer tweeted later today on Friday.

Source: leparis

All life articles on 2021-11-26

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