Brasilia [Brazil], January 27 (ANI/Sputnik): Brazil on Tuesday extended the suspension of flights from the United Kingdom and introduced a fresh ban on arrivals from South Africa.
"International flights to Brazil, which depart from or pass through the United Kingdom and South Africa, are temporarily banned," a decree, published in the government newspaper, read.
The authorities have also suspended boarding permit for persons who have arrived from the UK and South Africa or were there on transit in the past 14 days. Failure to comply with the new rule will result in the deportation of the passenger to the country of origin.
Brazil comes third in terms of the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases, following the United States and India. The nation has registered more than 8.8 million cases of the disease and over 217,000 fatalities.
In December, the UK informed the World Health Organization of a mutated COVID-19 variant, which is reported to be 70 per cent more transmissible than other coronavirus strains. Although the new strain has not been proven to be more pathogenic, many countries shut their borders and suspended travel with the United Kingdom. The closures, however, have so far not prevented the strain from infiltrating dozens of countries.
Another mutant strain was detected in South Africa at approximately the same time. (ANI/Sputnik)