Saudi confirms first case of Omicron variant

Saudi Arabia has confirmed its first case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant.

That's according to the state news agency (SPA), which said it was detected on a Saudi national flying into the Kingdom from Africa.

SPA, quoting a statement from the kingdom's health ministry, said authorities had isolated the person and people who were in contact with them.

The Saudi ministry urged people to complete their vaccination and ordered travellers to respect self-isolation and testing rules.

Omicron was first reported on Nov. 24 in southern Africa, where infections have risen steeply. It has since spread to more than a dozen countries, many of which have imposed travel restrictions to try to seal themselves off.

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