South Africa

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Stowaway Found on Plane May Have Been in Air for 11 Hours

Man discovered in Amsterdam survived flight that originated in South Africa

(Newser) - A cargo flight that originated in South Africa had a surprise waiting on board when it finally landed in Amsterdam: a guy hidden in the plane's wheel section, still alive after what may have been 11 hours in the air, per ABC News . "The man was found alive...

Fire Crews Work to Save Parliament
Fire Crews Work
to Save Parliament

Fire Crews Work to Save Parliament

Flames reignite in South Africa

(Newser) - Update: The fire sweeping through South Africa's Parliament complex was said to be under control Monday, but reignited hours later. The National Assembly, or lower chamber, is completely destroyed, the BBC reports. Flames were still seen coming from the building Monday night, and the fourth and fifth floors were...

South Africa: Omicron 'Flash Flood' Has Passed

Johns Hopkins University says US reported 647K cases Thursday

(Newser) - The omicron variant is pushing COVID case numbers to record levels in numerous countries—including the US, which reported a staggering 647,076 cases Thursday, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker. But in South Africa, one of the countries to first detect the variant, scientists believe the worst is...

Desmond Tutu Has Died at 90
Desmond Tutu Has 
Died at 90

Desmond Tutu Has Died at 90

World mourns South African freedom fighter

(Newser) - Desmond Tutu, South Africa’s Nobel Peace Prize-winning activist for racial justice and LGBT rights and retired Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town, has died, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa announced Sunday. He was 90. An uncompromising foe of apartheid—South Africa’s brutal regime of oppression against the Black majority—...

White House Is Lifting Travel Curbs on 8 African Countries

Feds say restrictions bought time to better understand omicron variant

(Newser) - With omicron now by far the dominant COVID variant in the US, authorities apparently don't see much point in continuing to ban travelers from southern Africa, where the variant was first detected last month. The White House confirmed Friday that the ban on non-US citizens who had been in...

Findings in 3 Countries: Omicron Appears Milder

Risk of hospitalization reduced compared to earlier variants, largely due to immunity

(Newser) - Three studies on populations in South Africa, Scotland, and England indicate the omicron coronavirus variant generally results in milder disease than with previous variants, and is less likely to send people to the hospital. It's reassuring news as omicron is now the dominant variant in many parts of the...

Out of South Africa, a 'Tantalizing Hint' on Omicron

Case count is dropping, at least in recent days

(Newser) - A new study out of South Africa offers some positive news on the omicron variant, but with an asterisk. The study, which appeared Tuesday in the preprint medical publication MedRxiv , found that South Africans who came down with the omicron variant were 80% less likely to be hospitalized compared to...

Early Data Doesn't Back Hope That Omicron Will Be Milder

There's plenty of caution that it's too early to draw conclusions

(Newser) - UK researchers say they see no indication that omicron will be milder than the delta variant of the coronavirus. In fact, they found the new strain's reinfection rate to be more than five times as high as delta's, Reuters reports. The Imperial College London study, which has not...

Better Omicron News Emerges in South Africa

Hospitalizations are down significantly when compared to the delta wave

(Newser) - Stories raising the alarm about the fast-spreading omicron variant aren't hard to find. For example, Britain estimates that 200,000 people are becoming infected with it each day at this point, notes the New York Times . And the same trend appears inevitable in the US. "No part of...

South African President Has Breakthrough COVID Case

Ramaphosa in 'good spirits' with mild symptoms

(Newser) - Pres. Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa tested positive Sunday for COVID after coming down with mild symptoms. He felt a little under the weather after a memorial service for former Deputy President FW De Klerk, and is now being cared for by the South African Military Health Service, per an...

Strategy May Not Change for Omicron

WHO official says target should remain the delta variant

(Newser) - Dr. Sikhulile Moyo was analyzing COVID-19 samples in his lab in Botswana last week when he noticed they looked startlingly different from others. Within days, the world was ablaze with the news that the coronavirus had a new variant of concern—one that appears to be driving a dramatic surge...

South Africa President: Omicron Travel Bans Are Discriminatory

Cyril Ramaphosa says they won't stop the spread, must be lifted now

(Newser) - Travel bans are increasingly being put into place against South Africa amid fears related to the COVID-19 variant newly identified there, and the president of the country is not happy. The bans, which have been implemented in places including the US, Canada, UK, Israel, EU, and Japan, are not backed...

2 Planes Flew in From South Africa. 61 People Had COVID

Dutch authorities are now testing passengers to see if they have worrisome omicron variant

(Newser) - Two flights arrived in the Netherlands on Friday, bearing some 600 passengers from South Africa, and also a good number of COVID cases—and those people are now being tested to see if they've got the newly emerging omicron variant . Reuters reports that 61 of the flights' passengers who...

Global Reaction to Variant Angers South Africa

Government and travel industry feel punished for transparency and scientists' quick work

(Newser) - South Africa's government and travel industry have responded angrily to travel restrictions imposed by the US, Britain and other nations over the latest coronavirus variant . Health Minister Joe Phaahla, at a press conference Friday, said the travel bans "are completely against the norms and standards as guided by...

South Africa Studies Variant
Variant Worries South Africa

Variant Worries South Africa

Cases are surging, but scientists don't know yet how many were caused by the new strain

(Newser) - A new coronavirus variant has been detected in South Africa that scientists say is a concern because of its high number of mutations and rapid spread among young people in Gauteng, the country's most populous province, Health Minister Joe Phaahla announced Thursday. The coronavirus evolves as it spreads, the...

South Africa&#39;s Last White President Dies
White Leader Who Freed
Nelson Mandela Dies

White Leader Who Freed Nelson Mandela Dies

FW de Klerk shared Nobel Peace Prize with Mandela in 1993

(Newser) - "When I talk about the end of apartheid, I prefer not to claim the honor that I have ended it," former South African President FW de Klerk said in 2011. But de Klerk, who has died at age 85, certainly played a major role in the end of...

Oscar Pistorius Is Up for Parole
Is Up
for Parole

Oscar Pistorius Is Up for Parole

Athlete who killed girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp might meet with her parents in South Africa

(Newser) - The name Oscar Pistorius is once again back in the headlines, this time because he is up for parole. And as the BBC reports, that process might result in him sitting down with the parents of the woman he killed, Reeva Steenkamp. The former South African Olympian fatally shot Steenkamp...

Suspected Poacher Trampled by Elephants in South Africa

Kruger National Park is trying to crack down on illegal hunting

(Newser) - Poaching wild animals isn’t safe for humans, either. Another suspected poacher was found dead in Kruger National Park in South Africa on Thursday, USA Today reports. Just last April, rangers caught three men hunting for rhinoceros and gave chase. One of them was caught, but another one came across...

Dozens of Penguins Stung to Death by Bees

63 endangered African penguins were found Friday on a South African beach

(Newser) - More than five dozen African penguins have met a sad end in South Africa, in what bird conservationists say is a most uncommon incident. AFP reports that 63 of the endangered birds were found dead Friday on Boulders Beach in Simon's Town, a suburb of Cape Town, and their...

New Variant Surfaces in South Africa

Researchers can't tell much yet, but WHO labels this version 'of concern'

(Newser) - Another coronavirus variant has been detected, say researchers who caution against becoming too concerned but suspect it's better at getting around immunity protection than delta. The researchers spotted the C.1.2 variant in May in South Africa, Reuters reports, and published their work this month. It has not...

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