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WHO holds emergency meeting to discuss ‘heavily mutated’ COVID-19 variant, UK takes action

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WHO meets to discuss new ‘heavily mutated’ COVID-19 variant
The is holding a meeting Friday to discuss the dramatic rise in COVID-19 cases in that has been blamed on a new variant of the virus.

Joe Phaahla, South Africa’s minister of health, identified the new variant as B.1.1.529 and said it seems highly contagious among young people.

The BBCthat the new variant seems to be the most heavily mutated so far in the outbreak. James Gallagher, the health correspondent, wrote that one scientist described the variant as “horrific.” He said the meeting of the WHO will likely result in the variant receiving a Greek code-name, like the Delta variant.


“This variant did surprise us,” Tulio de Oliveira, the director of the Center for South Africa’s Epidemic Response and Innovation, told the news outlet. “It has a big jump on evolution [and] many more mutations that we expected.”

Nature magazine that the variant was first reported in Botswana earlier this month. The report said scientists are trying to determine if the variant can somehow evade the immune response. One researcher in Johannesburg said, “We’re flying at warp speed.”

The British government announced that it was banning flights from South Africa and five other southern African countries effective at noon (1200GMT) on Friday and that anyone who had recently arrived from those countries would be asked to take a coronavirus test.

U.K. Health Secretary Sajid Javid said there were concerns the new variant “may be more transmissible” than the dominant delta strain, and “the vaccines that we currently have may be less effective” against it.

In other developments:
– Asian stock markets sink as traders watch Europe virus cases
– Cowboys dealing with COVID issues before Thanksgiving Day game vs. Raiders
– LA firefighter accused of wiping butt with vaccine mandate letter that was handed to him
– Guardians’ employees face COVID vaccine mandate or termination: report
– St. Louis health director tells staff to ignore COVID-19 ‘lunatic fringe’ in email: report
– Bryan Adams posts photo from ambulance, diagnosed with COVID for second time in month

New York Times staffers revolt, push holiday weekend boycott of its Wirecutter service amid strike
Staffers from the are openly revolting against their employer in solidarity with colleagues who went on strike during weekend. 

Wirecutter, which the Times describes as its “product recommendation service” offering consumers trusted advice on the latest merchandise being sold, published an article Thursday on the “75+ Best Early Black Friday Deals for 2021” ahead of the biggest shopping day of the season. 

However, when the Times shared the article on Twitter, the paper faced significant blowback, including from several employees. 

“100 PERCENT of @wirecutterunion is ON STRIKE starting today!” Times reporter Davey Alba . These posts are brought to you by NYT assigning work to middle managers & freelancers instead of paying @wirecutterunion a TOTAL OF $300,000 in raises distributed across 66 PEOPLE! NYT has ONE BILLION DOLLARS in cash!”

Journalists from other news organizations as well as progressive activists like the New York City division of Democratic Socialists of America also expressed support for the Wirecutter staffers. 

A spokesperson for the Times told Fox News, “The New York Times has a long history of productive relationships with unions to advance our shared objectives. We’re actively working with the Wirecutter Union to reach a collective bargaining agreement that continues to reward our employees for their work and contributions to The Times’s success, and we look forward to continuing those negotiations at the bargaining table in early December.”

The strike, which is set to go through Monday, is urging the public to “don’t cross the digital picket line” by not using Wirecutter during the busy shopping weekend.

In other developments:
– New York Times editorial writer hails ‘Republicans we’re thankful for‘: Liz Cheney, Adam Kinzinger among
– Liberal media routinely downplay inflation or turn it into a positive: ‘Slash your shopping burden’
– Media blasted for referring to Waukesha parade attack as ‘crash’
– Hollywood elite catches heat for reaction to soaring crime

Afghan translator expresses gratitude for daughters’ education, first Thanksgiving in America
Three months ago, Zabiullah R., who served as a combat translator for the 82nd Airborne in , did not know what would happen to him and his family after the U.S. military withdrawal.   

Zabiullah, affectionately known by troops as Johnny, was able to escape Kabul in August, with the help of a U.S. senator, a private veterans group, and members of the 82nd Airborne. Johnny arrived with his family at his new North Carolina home back in October.   

Today, his young daughters are already getting something they never would have received under the Taliban: an education. They have been welcomed at their new school in Weddington, North Carolina, and embraced by the community, where many of the soldiers Johnny once served alongside now live.   


“They’re happy and they’re excited,” said Johnny. “Every morning … 6 o’clock in the morning, my two daughters, they wake up and get ready … just come into my room and wake up us.”  

Johnny served as a translator for Sgt. Mike Verardo, who lost his leg in Afghanistan’s Arghandab Valley in 2010 and suffered a traumatic brain injury. Mike has undergone more than 100 surgeries at Walter Reed after serving with the 508th Infantry Regiment, an airborne infantry regiment of the United States Army, first formed in October 1942 during World War II. Both Mike and Johnny each have three daughters.  

Now, they are neighbors, and their daughters are best friends.  Their girls went trick-or-treating for the first time and now have play dates after school.  

“Seeing our six girls play together, six little girls whose dads served together, shoulder-to-shoulder in Afghanistan, has healed all of our hearts a little bit more each day,” said Sarah Verardo, Mike’s wife and CEO of The Independence Fund and Co-Founder of Save our Allies. “These children are an example to all about what it means to love all people.”

In other developments:
– See the pictures: US troops far from home celebrate Thanksgiving across the world
– Marine vet wounded by IED on Thanksgiving Day devotes holiday season to giving thanks to fellow troops
– Afghan translator finds new home in America after Taliban takeover
– Taliban’s new media guidelines ban TV dramas with female actors, make women journalists wear hijabs
– Biden Thanksgiving menu released by White House
– Thanksgiving canceled? Liberals who say America’s holiday promotes genocide and White supremacy

– Dave Chappelle shuts down member of woke mob calling him ‘bigot’ at event
– Legendary singer breaks silence on vaccines after harrowing hospitalization
– Trump’s Thanksgiving message to supporters leads to speculation of a Biden rematch
– California Apple store hit in latest smash-and-grab in broad daylight
– Georgia mom fatally stabbed by son in Thanksgiving Day killing, police say
– Jimmy Hoffa mystery: A look at theories as FBI investigates possible lead

– Employee walkout at Boston Market leaves customers without preordered Thanksgiving meals: report
– Buy now, pay later is the new layaway: What are the pros and cons?
– These are the world’s richest families and they live right here in the USA
– Drugmakers gear up for price restrictions in Biden’s legislative agenda
– EU to limit political ads, ban use of certain personal info
– South Korea to launch task force on banning dog meat
– This Black Friday, what’s the best way to pay?



A Marine vet who lost both his legs to an improvised explosive device on Thanksgiving Day in 2010 is devoting the holiday season to giving thanks to U.S. troops.

Marine Sergeant Gabriel Martinez, now medically retired, teamed up with Semper Fi & America’s Fund, a nonprofit that provides programs to assist wounded veterans, in order to give back to fellow veterans this holiday season, he told “Fox News Live” on Thanksgiving Day.

“Semper Fi Fund and America’s Fund has been part of my family now since the injury and I’m just one of the millions of veterans that they’ve been helping in mind, body, and spirit,” Martinez said. “Since I was wounded, they have provided assistance with just about any aspect they have. So many generous Americans are willing to provide monetary value and support, so this time of year is specifically not only is it special for me but for the fund.”

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David Aaro is a Reporter at Fox News Digital


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