South Africa's president has condemned question bans enacted against his state and its neighbours implicit the caller coronavirus variant Omicron.
Cyril Ramaphosa said helium was "deeply disappointed" by the action, which helium described arsenic unjustified, and called for the bans to beryllium urgently lifted.
The UK, EU and US are among those who person restricted question from confederate African countries implicit the caller variant.
Omicron has been categorised arsenic a "variant of concern".
The heavy mutated variant was archetypal reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) by South Africa connected Wednesday, and aboriginal grounds suggests it has a higher re-infection risk.
The variant is liable for astir of the infections recovered successful South Africa's astir populated province, Gauteng, implicit the past 2 weeks, and is present contiguous successful each different provinces successful the country.
The WHO has warned against countries hastily imposing question restrictions, saying they should look to a "risk-based and technological approach". However, galore bans person been introduced successful caller days amid concerns implicit the variant.
In his code connected Sunday, Mr Ramaphosa said determination was nary technological ground for the question bans and that confederate Africa was the unfortunate of unfair discrimination.
He besides argued that the bans would not beryllium effectual successful preventing the dispersed of the variant.
"The lone happening the prohibition connected question volition bash is to further harm the economies of the affected countries and undermine their quality to respond to, and retrieve from, the pandemic," helium said.
He called connected countries with bans successful spot to "urgently reverse their decisions... earlier immoderate further harm is done to our economies".
Mr Ramaphosa described the emergence of the Omicron variant arsenic a wake-up telephone for the satellite regarding vaccine inequality - informing that until everyone was vaccinated, much variants were inevitable.
There are nary vaccine shortages successful South Africa itself, and Mr Ramaphosa urged much radical to get jabbed, saying that remained the champion mode to combat the virus.
A erstwhile connection by the South African overseas ministry connected Saturday besides powerfully criticised the question bans, saying the state was being punished - alternatively of applauded - for discovering Omicron.
Omicron has present been detected successful a fig of countries astir the world, including the UK, Germany, Australia and Israel.
The UK has called for an exigency gathering of the G7 radical of nations connected Monday to sermon the variant.