The world responds to the Omicron variant with a new round of Covid restrictions

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Fears about the impact of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus rose Thursday after the first case was reported in the US, and Japan’s central bank warned of economic pain as countries respond with more containment measures. strict.

The Omicron variant was first detected in South Africa last week and has since spread to dozens of countries around the world. The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that the new strain poses a “very high” global risk and has urged governments to speed up vaccination of high-priority groups. France announced yesterday that a negative Covid-19 test will be mandatory for all travelers arriving from outside the EU.

09:30 Paris time: Omicron found in the French region of Paris

The local health body in the Paris region announced that the Omicron variant was detected in a person who had recently returned from Nigeria.

09:15 Paris time: no ban on flights to Japan

Japan on Thursday reversed the ban on new inbound flight bookings, revealing confusion among government agencies and the public over Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s strategy to avoid the Omicron variant of the coronavirus.

08:50 Paris time: UK approves Covid-19 treatment

British regulators on Thursday approved GlaxoSmithKline’s drug sotrovimab to treat people at high risk of developing severe Covid-19 symptoms, with the manufacturer saying it “retains activity” against the new variant of Omicron.

The monoclonal antibody was found “to be safe and effective in reducing the risk of hospitalization and death in people with mild or moderate Covid-19 infection who are at increased risk of developing severe disease,” said the Medicines and Products Regulatory Agency. Healthcare (MHRA).

08:00 Paris time: South Korea will require vaccinated travelers to quarantine

In the latest restrictions, South Korea on Thursday halted quarantine exemptions for fully vaccinated incoming travelers for two weeks as the daily number of coronavirus cases rose to a new record. South Korea confirmed its first five cases of the Omicron variant on Wednesday.

( Jowhar with AP, AFP, REUTERS)