Saudi Arabia records first case of Omicron corona virus variant

Dec 2, 2021: A health ministry official said on Wednesday that Saudi Arabia had registered the first confirmed case of coronavirus omicron type in the Gulf in a citizen returning from North Africa.

The variant, which was first announced by South Africa but have since been discovered in Europe, have prompted governments around the world to re-impose travel bans, the World Health Organization has said. Despite warnings from the World Health Organization (WHO), it could do more harm than good.

A ministry official told the state SPA news agency that “a case of Omicron has been found in the country – it was a citizen from a North African country.”

“He is being held in isolation, as are his contacts, and the necessary health measures have been taken.”

Saudi Arabia last week suspended flights from seven South African countries, reflecting similar moves by other governments, but travel ties with North Africa have not been affected. The kingdom was removing some of the restrictions imposed earlier in the pandemic, allowing worshipers to resume prayers shoulder to shoulder from October.

Since the outbreak, 549,000 cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in Saudi Arabia, of which 8,836 have been fatal. More than 47 million doses of the cod vaccine have been administered in the country, with a population of about 35 million.

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