South African government complains of penalty for detection


The South African government made its frustration public on Saturday, saying it was being “punished” for detecting the new COVID-19 omicron variant, which the World Health Organization has called a “variant of concern” and is more transmissible than the dominant delta strain.

The decision by a number of countries around the world to ban flights from southern Africa following the discovery of the variant “is akin to punishing South Africa for its advanced genomic sequencing and its ability to detect new variants more quickly, ”the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

“Scientific excellence should be applauded and not punished,” he said.

The ministry said new variants have been discovered in other parts of the world.

“Each of these cases has had no recent link to southern Africa, but the reaction to these countries is radically different from the cases in southern Africa,” he said.

Israel and Belgium announced after South Africa that they had also detected cases of omicron.

The government insisted that “South Africa’s ability to test and its accelerated vaccination program, supported by a world-class scientific community, should give our global partners the comfort that we are doing as well as them in the management of the pandemic “.

With more than 2.95 million cases and 89,783 deaths, South Africa is the country worst affected in Africa by the pandemic.


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