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Dubai: The Israeli Health Ministry has confirmed the detection of four cases of the new mutant coronavirus coming from the UK.

Three of the cases were people who recently returned from the UK and are staying in a state-run quarantine hotel, and the ministry is attempting to track down the source of the fourth case, Health Minister Yuli Edelstein says.

The minister said the mutation is believed to be more infectious, but not more lethal.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the cases of the British variant in Israel prove that his government acted correctly in imposing restrictions on returning travelers.

“We must assume the strain is spreading here. The good news is… that there’s a good chance — but it’s not certain — that the vaccines will be effective [against the variant]. We don’t know for sure, but it’s highly likely,” he says, adding that scientists will know more in days,” Netanyahu said.

He added: “It is good chance that the vaccine will shield against the British strain.”