New UK-linked strain of COVID-19 detected in 22 European nations: WHO

Last Modified Thursday, 7 January 2021 (19:04 IST)
Zurich: The UK-linked coronavirus variant, which is much more transmissible than the original one, has been detected in 22 European countries, World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge said on Thursday.

“Like all viruses ... the COVID-19 virus has changed overtime. I do understand the concern about a possible impact of SARS CoV-2 ... 22 counties in the European region have detected this new variant,” Kluge said at a briefing.
He admitted that the new variant is spreading faster than other SARS-CoV-2 variants, although it does not seem to be more pathogenic. Kluge also said the new mutation is spreading across all age groups, adding that children are not at high risk.
In December, the UK announced that the new coronavirus strain was detected in the country, adding that the new variant can be up to 70 percent more transmissible than other SARS-CoV-2 variants. After the news, many countries suspended travel to and from the UK.