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Covid omicron news – live: US reports 10 cases in five states as country imposes strict new travel rules


<p> A Covid-19 test center operates inside the Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on 1 December 2021 in Los Angeles, California</p>

A Covid-19 test center operates inside the Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on 1 December 2021 in Los Angeles, California

(Getty Images)

The US has confirmed 10 cases of the omicron variant across five states, even as president Joe Biden urged the public not to panic.

The cases reported in California, Colorado and Minnesota were among fully vaccinated individuals who developed mild symptoms, while Hawaii reported a case with an unvaccinated individual who had moderate symptoms. A 76-year-old New York resident recently returned from South Africa also tested positive for the new variant.

On Thursday, the Biden administration announced a negative Covid-19 test, taken within a day before the flight, would be required for all travellers above the age of 2 coming to the US.

Panama and Nepal have joined the list of countries blocking travellers from African nations due to concerns over the spread of omicron. The countries include South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Malawi.

And Germany has tightened restrictions on unvaccinated individuals, barring them from much of public life in a bid to tackle the surge in infections. Under the new rules, those who are fully vaccinated or have recently recovered from the infection would be allowed in restaurants, cinemas and shops — others won’t be. Parliament might also soon vote to make vaccinations compulsory, announced the outgoing chancellor Angela Merkel.

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New Covid testing restriction for travelers entering US

The Biden administration has tightened pre-departure Covid testing rules for all inbound international travelers, requiring a negative test taken within 24 hours of departure for the US. Earlier, the test could be taken up to three days before entering the country. The rule applies equally to citizens and non-citizens.

Additionally, the foreign nationals must also be fully vaccinated.

Travelers arrive for flights at Newark Liberty International Airport on 30 November 2021 in Newark, New Jersey

(Getty Images)

Namita Singh3 December 2021 04:28

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Welcome to The Independent’s coverage of the latest Covid news on Friday 3 December, including developments with the omicron variant that has sparked international concern.

Namita Singh3 December 2021 04:14



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