New omicron variant stokes world fears, triggers travel bans

Updated at 3:53 p.m.

A DEPARTURES screen displays a canceled flight to Johannesburg and a message to contact the airline for a scheduled flight to Capetown, at London's Heathrow Airport on Friday. The U.K. announced that it was banning flights from South Africa and five other southern African countries effective at noon on Friday. AP PHOTO/ALBERTO PEZZALI
BRUSSELS (AP) – The discovery of a new coronavirus variant sent a chill through much of the world Friday as nations raced to halt air travel, markets fell sharply and scientists held emergency meetings to weigh the exact risks, which were largely unknown. A World Health Organization panel named the variant “omicron” and classified it as…

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