Saudi Arabia reports 1st case of Omicron Covid-19 variant

The patient had travelled from a North African country.

Syahindah Ishak | December 01, 2021, 06:58 PM

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Saudi Arabia has confirmed its first case of the Omicron Covid-19 variant, its state news agency SPA reported.

Was in a North African country

According to Al Arabiya News, the infected person is a Saudi national who had travelled from a North African country.

The infected person and his/her close contacts have been isolated.

No other details about the case were provided by Saudi Arabia's health ministry.

This is the first Omicron Covid-19 variant case reported in the Middle East and North Africa, as reported by Reuters.

Singapore deferred VTL with Saudi Arabia

Singapore had previously agreed on launching the Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTLs) with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The VTLs were set to begin on Dec. 6, with applications for the Vaccinated Travel Pass (VTP) for short-term visitors and long-term pass holders to open on Nov. 29.

However, on Nov. 28, the Singapore's Ministry of Health (MOH) announced that the launch of the VTLs would be deferred until further notice.

This is to reduce the risk of importation and spread of the Omicron variant, as Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the UAE are in close proximity to several African countries where the variant had been detected.

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Top image by Andrey Filippov via Flickr.