Vice President Kamala Harris says a travel ban for South Africa and seven other countries "is necessary" to prevent the spread of the new COVID-19 variant, Omicron, according to Fox News.
"I have been briefed," Harris told reporters Saturday during a visit to a Christmas market in downtown Washington, D.C. "As the president has said, 'we're gonna take every precaution' and that's why we've taken the measures we have."
She also said she "can't stress enough" how important it is for every American to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
"I will say what I say every time because it remains true. They are safe, the vaccines are free, and they will save your life."
When pressed if the White House would issue any more travel bans, Harris responded, "we'll take it one step at a time, but as of now we've done what we believe is necessary."
President Joe Biden on Friday issued a travel ban to South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique, and Malawi due to concerns of the "heavily mutated" Omicron variant.
Additionally, the European Union, the United Kingdom, and Israel have also issued travel bans to southern Africa.
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