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Europe is main driver of COVID-19 with 65% of cases worldwide: WHO

Headlines 17:11 11 Dec, 2021

To halt omicron, fight dominant delta variant effectively, measures should be doubled, says WHO’s Margaret Harris

Europe is main driver of COVID-19 with 65% of cases worldwide: WHO

Europe is the primary driver of COVID-19 cases and facing an extremely severe outbreak of the disease, a World Health Organization spokeswoman said Friday.

Responding to a question by Anadolu Agency on the severity of the dominant delta variant of the coronavirus despite the emergence of the latest strain omicron, Margaret Harris said: “We would certainly say Europe is the main driver.

"We have 65% of cases coming from Europe, and Europe is in the midst of a very fierce, very difficult outbreak.”

“And the vast majority (of cases) are delta,” she added.

Harris reiterated an old message from the world health body to “really strengthen” public health social measures and vaccinations “because all those things will stop both delta and omicron.”

She said the omicron variant had been detected in 58 countries after first being tracked down in South Africa and Botswana.

Harris said a doubling of trusted measures is needed, such as avoiding mass gatherings and crowds while wearing masks and paying attention to hand hygiene.

The Worldometer website, which gives current and projected data on COVID-19, reported Friday fatality figures for Eastern Europe in the preceding 24 hours of 1,176 people in Russia, 571 in Poland, and 442 people in Ukraine.

Worldwide, there were slightly over 5.3 million fatalities since the outbreak of the pandemic nearly two years ago, according to the data-tracking website.