First cases of new coronavirus variant confirmed in France and Spain

France and Spain have reported their first confirmed cases of the new coronavirus variant originally discovered in the UK.

Iran PressEurope: The case in France is a French citizen who lives in England and had left London for Tours on 19 December.

He is currently self-isolating at home and is said to be doing fine.

According to Sky News, Spain reported its first case of the variant on Saturday, although no further details have yet been revealed.

The new variant, dubbed VUI-202012/01, has worried experts and world leaders as it is thought to be up to 70% more transmissible - meaning it can spread much faster.

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After the variant was identified in southeast England, countries across the world scrambled to close their borders to the UK and prevent it from reaching their citizens.

Cases of the new variant have also been confirmed in Denmark, Italy, Gibraltar, the Netherlands, and Australia.

While it is believed to spread faster, there is no evidence so far that the new variant causes more serious illness or is able to evade vaccines - the first of which has started to arrive in several European countries.


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