July 2, 2022

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Biden “is considering” changing travel restrictions from South Africa

U.S. President Joe Biden said Tuesday that he was “considering” changing travel restrictions from South Africa and other African countries imposed by his government last November in the wake of the appearance of the Omigran variant. Biden was speaking to reporters after his speech on the new variant of the Covit-19, which was confirmed to be in the United States on December 1 after a lawsuit was filed in California. “I’m going to talk to my team in the next few days,” the president added, acknowledging that this was something doctors would raise with him.

He said he would give an answer soon. The president justified this decision by saying that the decision was made to determine how long they had been in the country before an Omigron case was discovered and what they needed to do to deal with it. Washington’s ban, which took effect on November 29, affects travelers from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Namibia. Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique and Malawi. Earlier this month, Anthony Fassi, a top U.S. government epidemiologist, said he expected the United States to reconsider travel restrictions “for a reasonable period of time.”

The move has even drawn strong criticism from the World Health Organization (WHO) for imposing “punishment” on those countries after discovering a new variant of COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC, English) revealed this Monday that Omigron is the most contagious type of corona virus in the United States, accounting for 73.2% of new cases between December 12 and 18. (Eph)

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