Flights suspended and six African countries on red list amid fears over new variant

By Abigail Tembo Health Editor
Flights from six Southern African countries will be suspended from midday on Friday 26 and the nations will be added to the travel red list, following the discovery of a new Covid-19 variant which one health official called the “worst one we’ve seen so far”.

“From 4am on Sunday, anyone who arrives in the UK from South Africa, Namibia, Lesotho, Botswana, Eswatini and Zimbabwe must quarantine in a hotel for 10 days at their own expense”

Secretary of State for Health and Social Care of the United Kingdom Sajid Javid said anyone who arrives back in the UK before then should quarantine at home for 10 days and take PCR tests on days two and eight of their isolation.

The variant, formally known as B.1.1.529, was first identified in Botswana in Southern Africa on November 11.

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