The head of France’s scientific council, Jean-Francoise Delfraissy, on Wednesday warned of the dangers of a mutation of the coronavirus spreading rapidly in Britain.
“I’m very worried,’’ he told broadcaster Franceinfo.
It was too late to prevent the spread of the new strain in France, but if would spread even further if no measures were taken, Delfraissy said.
There are currently 11 confirmed cases and about 40 suspected cases of the new strain of the coronavirus in the greater Paris area, the head of the local health authority, Aurelien Roussau, told broadcaster BFMTV.
Several confirmed cases of the mutant strain which is suspected of being significantly more transmissible than other forms of the novel coronavirus have been recorded across the country, for example in the southern port city of Marseille on the weekend.
Prime Minister Jean Castex is scheduled to talk about the coronavirus situation in the country again on Thursday evening, with many expecting the current measures to be tightened.
France, with a population of about 67 million, has reported almost 69,000 COVID-19-related deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.
About 190,000 people have been vaccinated against the virus as of Tuesday.