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Fears heavily mutated Covid variant 'may evade vaccine protection'

BBC, 26 Nov 2021
Concern about a new, heavily mutated variant of coronavirus first detected in southern Africa, has led the UK to restrict travelled to six African countries - South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho and Eswatini.

The variant, known as B.1.1.529, is the most heavily mutated version discovered so far - and it has such a long list of mutations that it was described by one scientist as "horrific".

South Africa, Hong Kong and Botswana have identified just 59 cases of the variant, so far, while Israeli media also reports one case has been identified from a traveller.

UK Transport Secretary Grant Shapps paid tribute to South Africa's fast and transparent response, and said of the UK's decision to restrict travel: "This is a safety-first approach."

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