By Seun Adeuyi
The first case of a new coronavirus variant that recently emerged in the United Kingdom has been confirmed in France, its health ministry said on late Firday.
Experts say the new strain of the virus is more contagious, prompting more than 50 countries to impose travel restrictions on the UK.
AFP quoted the ministry to have said that the first French case was found in a citizen living in Britain who arrived from London on December 19.
The victim is asymptomatic and self-isolating at home in Tours in central France.
They were said to have been tested in a hospital on December 21, and later found positive for the strain.
In a statement, the ministry said, Health authorities have carried out contact-tracing for the health professionals taking care of the patient.
It said any of their contacts that were seen as vulnerable would similarly be isolated.
The statement added that “in addition to this first case, several other positive samples that may suggest the VOC 202012/01 variant are being sequenced by the specialist laboratories of the national Pasteur Institute.”