Covid-19: South African health minister says travel bans unjustified

Joe Phaahla says Britain had imposed travel restrictions on his country without prior discussion



A  young woman reacts as she receives a Pfizer jab against Covid-19, in Diepsloot Township near Johannesburg. — AP
A young woman reacts as she receives a Pfizer jab against Covid-19, in Diepsloot Township near Johannesburg. — AP

By Reuters

Published: Fri 26 Nov 2021, 9:09 PM

Last updated: Fri 26 Nov 2021, 9:43 PM

South African Health Minister Joe Phaahla said on Friday that preliminary studies suggest a new Covid-19 variant detected in his country may be more transmissible, but the decision of other countries to impose travel restrictions is “unjustified”.

Phaahla told a media briefing that South Africa was acting with transparency, and that travel bans contravened the norms and standards of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

He said that Britain had imposed travel restrictions on his country without prior discussion.

Britain banned flights from South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini, Zimbabwe and Namibia after the detection of a new variant of the Covid-19 virus in South Africa.


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