A team of scientists at the Faculty of Medical Sciences at the University of Sri Jayewardenepura confirmed detection of the new variant of the novel Coronavirus

Sri Lankan authorities on Wednesday said a visiting British national tested positive for the new strain of COVID-19 reported recently in the United Kingdom.

“An individual who arrived from the UK was found carrying the new COVID-19 variant that is rapidly spreading in the UK,” Chief Epidemiologist Dr. Sudath Samaraweera told local media. Health authorities suspect that the infected person arrived in Sri Lanka within the last two weeks.

A team of scientists at the Faculty of Medical Sciences at the University of Sri Jayewardenepura confirmed detection of the new variant of the novel Coronavirus. Health officials did not share further details of the patient, or her/his arrival.

The development comes on the eve of England’s two-Test tour of Sri Lanka that, authorities had said, was being held as per strict medical protocols, including mandatory quarantine. Team England arrived in Sri Lanka on January 3. It also comes amid Sri Lanka’s second wave of Covid-19, since an outbreak in October, during which time the total number of cases reported went up from 3,300 to over 49,000 [6,672 are active]. The fatalities too increased from 13 to 244, as of Wednesday evening.

Meanwhile, in an attempt to revive the country’s crucial tourism sector, after borders were closed to tourists for nearly nine months, authorities welcomed nearly 200 Ukrainian tourists in the last week of December. However, with at least five of them testing Covid-19 positive on arrival, Opposition politicians and critics have slammed the government for “putting the country at risk”, with its “pilot project”.

You have reached your limit for free articles this month.

Subscription Benefits Include

Today’s Paper

Find mobile-friendly version of articles from the day’s newspaper in one easy-to-read list.

Unlimited Access

Enjoy reading as many articles as you wish without any limitations.

Personalised recommendations

A select list of articles that match your interests and tastes.

Faster pages

Move smoothly between articles as our pages load instantly.

Dashboard

A one-stop-shop for seeing the latest updates, and managing your preferences.

Briefing

We brief you on the latest and most important developments, three times a day.

Support Quality Journalism.

*Our Digital Subscription plans do not currently include the e-paper, crossword and print.

A letter from the Editor


Dear subscriber,

Thank you!

Your support for our journalism is invaluable. It’s a support for truth and fairness in journalism. It has helped us keep apace with events and happenings.

The Hindu has always stood for journalism that is in the public interest. At this difficult time, it becomes even more important that we have access to information that has a bearing on our health and well-being, our lives, and livelihoods. As a subscriber, you are not only a beneficiary of our work but also its enabler.

We also reiterate here the promise that our team of reporters, copy editors, fact-checkers, designers, and photographers will deliver quality journalism that stays away from vested interest and political propaganda.

Suresh Nambath



Source link