Kurdistan Region hit by fourth wave of coronavirus: minister

A medical worker disinfects a neighborhood in Penjwen town, east of Sulaimani, June 5, 2020.

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — The Kurdistan Region is being hit by a fourth wave of coronavirus infections likely driven by the Omicron variant, health minister Saman Barzinji said on Wednesday.

“The fourth wave of the coronavirus and Omicron variant has begun strongly and rapidly,” Barzinji said in a video message.

Last week, the health minister said five cases of the new coronavirus variant were recorded among members of one family who live in Duhok city.

One of the members of the family who was returned from abroad was infected with the new variant, he noted.

Barzanji called on people to get vaccinated and avoid crowded places.

The World Health Organization said last month that Omicron was spreading rapidly in countries with high levels of population immunity, but it was unclear if this was due to the virus’ ability to evade immunity, its inherent increased transmissibility or a combination of both.

As of Tuesday, the ministry of health has recorded 384,182 cases of the coronavirus, including 7,151 deaths.

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