Chile has identified its first case of the new, apparently more transmissible variant of the coronavirus that appeared in Britain and has scattered across the globe.
The strain was discovered in a Chilean plane passenger who arrived on December 22, the South American country’s health ministry wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.
On December 20, Chile was one of the first Latin American countries to suspend direct flights to Britain out of concern over the new coronavirus variant that had taken hold in England.
But the infected Chilean passenger had flown via Madrid after visiting family members in London.
The strain has been found in countries across Europe, and as far away as India, Japan and Canada.
To date, 603,986 people have been confirmed to have been infected with the coronavirus in Chile and 16,488 have died. Last week, the country recorded its most new infections in a single day since July.
Chile began vaccinations against Covid-19 last week.