Canada extends ban on passenger flights from U.K. until Jan. 6

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Canada is extending its ban on passenger flights from the United Kingdom until Jan. 6, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Wednesday.

The two-week extension is on top of the initial ban, originally for three days, implemented Monday. Those restrictions were in response to the emergence of a new variant of COVID-19 in Britain that research suggests is more transmissible than the variant currently dominant in Canada.

Trudeau made the announcement during an address outside of Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on Wednesday afternoon. In that address, he also announced that Canada had secured additional doses of the Pfizer vaccine to be delivered in January and the appointment of Vice-Admiral Art McDonald as new chief of the defence staff.

Countries around the world have restricted travel from the U.K. in response to the new variant of COVID-19. On Tuesday, federal health officials said they had not yet detected the variant in an analysis of samples already gathered in Canada.

As of Tuesday, the Public Health Agency of Canada had analyzed over 25,000 samples of the virus, Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam said. — CBC News

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