India discards Singapore from ‘at-risk’ nations

Dozens of countries have imposed travel restrictions on the southern African nations since the mutation was discovered.

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New Delhi: India has discarded Singapore from the ‘at-risk’ nations list, people travelling for ‘at-risk’ counties are required to follow additional safety measures on arrival including post-arrival testing.

The present list of ‘at-risk’ nations includes the United Kingdom, Brazil, South Africa, Botswana, Ghana, China, Mauritius, Zimbabwe, New Zealand, Israel, Tanzania and Hong Kong.

This development comes as Omicron has been reported in 57 countries, and World Health Organization (WHO) expects the number to continue growing.

Taking cognizance of the emergence of highly mutant Covid-19 variant B.1.1529 or Omicron cases, India added several countries to the list from where travellers would need to follow additional measures on arrival in the country, including post-arrival testing for infection.

A new variant of COVID-19 was first reported to the World Health Organisation (WHO) from South Africa on November 25. As per the WHO, the first known confirmed B.1.1.529 infection was from a specimen collected on November 9 this year.

On November 26, the WHO named the new COVID-19 variant B.1.1.529, which has been detected in South Africa, as ‘Omicron’. The WHO has classified Omicron as a ‘variant of concern’.

Dozens of countries have imposed travel restrictions on the southern African nations since the mutation was discovered.

The new Omicron coronavirus variant has been confirmed in 23 countries and their number is expected to rise, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus had said. 

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