India expects the Omicron variant of coronavirus to cause less severe disease, the health ministry said yesterday, thanks to vaccinations and high prior exposure to the Delta variant that infected nearly 70% of the population by July.
It took more than a wave of a wand, but Pakistani university students transformed their 150-year-old campus into Hogwarts this week as they kicked off a festival celebrating the fictional young wizard Harry Potter.
The Omicron variant has been detected in 38 countries but no deaths have yet been reported, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said yesterday as authorities worldwide rushed to stem the spread of the heavily mutated coronavirus (Covid-19) strain.
Germany has decided to bar the unvaccinated from all but the most essential businesses, and the United States is due to announce further travel curbs as countries around the globe scramble to keep out the Omicron variant of the coronavirus.
Twitter said yesterday that it had shut down nearly 3,500 accounts that were posting pro-government propaganda in six countries, including China and Russia.
India reported its first two cases of the Omicron coronavirus variant yesterday but the government said it had no immediate plan to authorise booster vaccine shots despite demands from lawmakers.
Air travellers to the United States will face tougher Covid-19 testing rules, as several countries moved to seal-off their borders amid heightened uncertainty around the virulence of the Omicron variant and its ability to dodge existing vaccines.
The EU drug regulator could approve Covid-19 vaccines that have been adapted to target the new variant within three to four months if needed, the agency's chief said on Tuesday as she said existing shots would continue to provide protection.
India's union health secretary Rajesh Bhushan said on Tuesday that the Omicron variant does show up on RT-PCR and RAT testing
Australian authorities on Tuesday confirmed a person with Covid-19 had the new Omicron variant after disclosing that the person had been active in the community, but urged calm as they weighed up the severity of the strain.