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Who decides that omicron is a 'South African' variant?

15 0 26
04.12.2021

If it wasn't a letter in the Greek alphabet, the name "omicron" would make for a perfect villain in a Hollywood fantasy saga. Unfortunately, the new coronavirus variant appears to be following that storyline, with more fiction than fact informing government guidelines on how to address this latest chapter in the ongoing public health crisis.

To be sure, each mutation of the virus has to be treated with caution and great care, but placing countries under blanket travel bans does not stop a virus from spreading; if anything, it only leads to people infected not with COVID-19 but with the travel-bug to look for more ingenious ways to follow through with their existing travel plans for the festive season.

First of all, we all owe a huge debt of gratitude to the South African scientists, who first identified the omicron variant of the coronavirus and communicated this discovery with great transparency. You'd think that this would foster greater global cooperation efforts in fighting the virus. You would be wrong.

DW's Sertan Sanderson won't be changing his personal travel plans any time soon

Instead, South Africa is being singled out — once again — as the convenient scapegoat in the latest evolution of the COVID-19 drama. The repercussions for the travel industry in........

© Deutsche Welle


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