ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Federal Minister for Planning and Development Asad Umar on Monday said that new variant of coronavirus is extremely dangerous and next two to three weeks are extremely important in this regard.
National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) head Asad Umar, while addressing a press conference along with SAPM Faisal Sultan, said that the new variant is spreading around the world but the vaccine provides the only protection against the virus.
Asad Umar further said that government is taking steps to control the spread of variant in the country. He while announcing a big vaccination campaign in coming two to three days, urged masses to get vaccinated against the virus.
On the occasion, Faisal Sultan said that omicron variant is spreading faster as compared to other variants. Unvaccinated people are being affected by the virus all around the globe, he added.
The PM’s aide further said that millions of people have been vaccinated and but still millions are yet to get their jabs.
New Covid variant shuts borders across globe
On the other hand a new, heavily mutated Covid-19 variant spread across the globe on Sunday, shutting borders and renewing curbs.
Dubbed Omicron, the strain, first discovered in southern Africa, represents a fresh challenge to global efforts to battle the pandemic, amid fears it is highly infectious. Several countries have already re-imposed measures many had hoped were a thing of the past.
"We know we are now in a race against time," said European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen. Vaccine manufacturers needed two to three weeks "to get a full picture of the quality of the mutations", she added.
A long list of countries have already imposed travel restrictions on southern Africa, including Pakistan, Qatar, the United States, Britain, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the Netherlands.
Angola became the first southern African country to suspend all flights from its regional neighbours Mozambique, Namibia and South Africa.
South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday called on countries to lift the travel bans "before any further damage is done to our economies".
The head of the World Health Organization in Africa also urged countries to follow the science rather than impose flight bans in a bid to contain the new Covid strain.
"With the Omicron variant now detected in several regions of the world, putting in place travel bans that target Africa attacks global solidarity," said WHO regional director Matshidiso Moeti.