(ALJAZEERA) – Italy has found a patient with the new coronavirus strain, that was also found, in Britain, the health ministry announced on Sunday.
Several European countries and others, such as Kuwait, have banned flights to and from the United Kingdom, in hopes of blocking the new strain which is sweeping across southern England from establishing a strong foothold on the continent.
The new coronavirus strain is “out of control,” British Health Secretary Matt Hancock has told the BBC News.
Globally, the number of coronavirus infection crosses 76 million, with nearly 1.7 million deaths recorded. More than 43 million have recovered.
Iran suspends flights to UK over coronavirus concerns
Iran suspended flights to Britain for two weeks due to the new coronavirus strain, state news agency IRNA reported.
“Due to the new circumstances in the spread of COVID-19 in the United Kingdom, flights between Tehran and destinations in the UK will be suspended for two weeks,” IRNA quoted Shahram Adamnejad, a deputy transport minister, as saying.
Quebec opposition party asks Canada’s Trudeau to halt UK flights
An opposition party in Canada is calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to suspend all flights and passengers seeking to enter the country from the UK.
Bloc Quebecois party leader Yves-Francois Blanchet expressed solidarity with people in the UK in a statement on Sunday, but said the measure is “preventative and necessary” to prevent any potential spread of the new strain of COVID-19.
“Caution is in the best interests” of people in Quebec and Canada, Blanchet said.
“If a strain of COVID-19 were to spread with increased speed among vulnerable people, the effects could be deplorable for peoples’ health, as well as for the healthcare system and workers that are already under tremendous pressure.”