French well being ministry says the person arrived in France from London on December 19 and was asymptomatic.

Well being authorities in France have confirmed the nation’s first case of the coronavirus variant that prompted strict lockdown measures in the UK and international journey restrictions.

The French well being ministry stated a French man who arrived in France from the British capital, London, on December 19 had examined optimistic for the brand new variant on Friday.

He had no signs and was isolating in his residence within the central metropolis of Excursions.

Authorities have carried out contact-tracing for the well being professionals taking good care of the affected person, the ministry stated. Any of their contacts that had been seen as weak would equally be remoted, it stated.

Along with this primary case, a number of different optimistic samples that “might counsel the VOC 202012/01 variant are being sequenced” by the specialist laboratories of the nationwide Pasteur Institute, the assertion added.

Italian authorities have detected the brand new pressure in a affected person in Rome, whereas the World Well being Group reported that 9 instances have been detected in Denmark and one every within the Netherlands and Australia.

Following the snap 48-hour ban this week, France had reopened its borders to the UK – partly to permit French residents to return residence, in addition to to alleviate the large build-up of freight items – however had instituted a testing coverage.

France’s inside ministry stated Thursday that limits on journey from the UK will proceed “till no less than January 6”.

For now, solely residents of France or the EU, these with residency rights there or enterprise travellers are allowed to make the crossing from the UK – if they will present a damaging COVID-19 take a look at lower than three days outdated.

British Well being Secretary Matt Hancock had stated on December 14 {that a} spike in COVID instances within the UK might need been linked to the brand new variant of the virus within the nation. Scientists say the brand new pressure could also be as much as 70 p.c extra transmissible.

Hancock stated greater than 1,000 instances of the brand new variant had been recognized, primarily in southeastern England. Earlier than Christmas, the well being minister had introduced the growth of strict lockdown measures throughout additional elements of the south of England to comprise the unfold of the illness.

With greater than 68,000 deaths from the virus, the UK is likely one of the hardest-hit nations in Europe.

Nations around the globe have in current days closed their borders to each the UK and South Africa following the identification of instances of the brand new, fast-spreading variant of the coronavirus in these nations.

France, in the meantime, registered 20,262 new, confirmed COVID-19 instances and 159 extra associated deaths in hospitals within the final 24 hours.

France’s variety of confirmed COVID-19 instances now stands at 2,547,771 whereas its COVID-19 demise toll has reached 62,427 – the seventh-highest on the planet.