Iran records first case of new coronavirus variant

Passenger coming from UK found carrying new virus variant.

Iran records first case of new coronavirus variant

 Iran on Tuesday registered its first case of a more transmissible coronavirus variant that emerged in Britain.

Health Minister Saeed Namaki said a passenger coming from Britain was found carrying the virus.

The passenger has been admitted to a private hospital and so far no trace of the virus has been found in his surroundings, Namaki said.

The patient had been in self quarantine since arriving from the UK last week and the virus has not spread so far, official sources said.

It comes two days after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said the country has managed to contain the third wave of the COVID-19 after overcoming the first two waves.

Iran has so far recorded over 1.2 million cases of the virus since it first broke out in February last year, along with over 55,000 deaths.

The new virus cases have seen a significant drop in recent weeks following the imposition of countrywide restrictions.

Rouhani had warned that the UK variant of the virus can reach Iran if necessary health protocols were not followed by people.

The UK variant of the coronavirus has emerged with alarmingly high percentage of new cases in the UK and many other countries.

Iran last week carried out the first phase of human trials on homegrown vaccine, after facing difficulties in importing the vaccine due to US sanctions.