U.S. President Joe Biden updates Americans on the new Omicron coronavirus variant. (Photo: AP-Yonhap)
U.S. President Joe Biden has told Americans that the emergence of the new Omicron coronavirus variant is no reason to panic, and he insisted the country will not go back into lockdown.
The World Health Organization has described the variant as "potentially very dangerous" especially with half of the world's population still unvaccinated.
Biden called on other countries to follow the U.S. lead and donate vaccines to developing nations.
"To beat the pandemic, we have to vaccinate the world as well and America is leading that effort. We've shipped for free more vaccines to other countries than all other countries in the world combined, over 275 million vaccines to 110 countries.”
Omicron has prompted countries to impose travel bans for those from southern Africa.
Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, said Guterres about the widespread restrictions.
"The secretary-general said he is now deeply concerned about the isolation of southern African countries due to new COVID-19 travel restrictions. As he and others have long warned, low vaccination rates are breeding ground for variants. The people of Africa cannot be blamed for the immorally low level of vaccinations available on the continent and they should not be penalized for identifying and sharing crucial science and health information with the world.”
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