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Biden says the US rethinking travel ban amid angry blowback in Africa

By Julian Pecquet
Posted on Wednesday, 22 December 2021 20:47, updated on Thursday, 23 December 2021 10:31

U.S. President Joe Biden speaks about the country's fight against COVID-19, in Washington
U.S. President Joe Biden says he will reconsider travel bans for Africa. December 21, 2021. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

President Joe Biden indicated this week that the US could soon end a weeks-old travel ban on African countries that has done next to nothing to stop the spread of the Omicron variant, while prompting an angry backlash from a continent that Washington has been eager to court.

The US imposed travel restrictions on eight southern African nations on 29 November after the new highly transmissible Covid-19 variant was first identified in South Africa. The other countries include Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe.