A reporter interrupted Thursday’s press conference and confronted White House press secretary Jen Psaki over President Joe Biden’s “racist” travel restrictions against African countries over the Omicron variant.
The Biden administration, along with other nations, imposed travel restrictions on South Africa and its neighboring countries on Nov. 29, with the advice of White House chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci. South Africa had the first confirmed case of the variant, which has quickly spread to other parts of the globe.
Today News Africa reporter Simon Ateba said that South Africa only accounts for 6% of the Omicron variant cases, but that nearly 70 countries have solely imposed restrictions on African countries. He challenged Psaki on the U.S. imposing restrictions on only eight African countries, rather than on all 57 countries that have confirmed cases of the variant.
“What would you say to those who believe that this is a racist ban, that it is only on African and black African nations?” Ateba pressed.