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US to lift its ban on travel from southern Africa

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The United States is set to lift its travel ban imposed on several southern African nations from next Friday, 31 December. The ban was put in place to restrict entry to foreign nationals after the Omicron variant of Covid was first detected by the World Health Organization (WHO) on 24 November.

From 29 November, nearly all non-US citizens who had recently been in South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique and Malawi were banned in an "abundance of caution" approach.

While WHO and the United Nations spoke out against the travel bans, a number of countries around the world also restricted travel from southern Africa at the time.

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