Genome sequencing of 578 samples collected from the deceased showed 560 of them had the Omicron variant.
The yet-to-be peer-reviewed findings, recently posted on the preprint repository BioRxiv, show that the BA.2 sub variant may have features that make it as capable of causing serious illness as older coronavirus variants.
Over the past two weeks, cases of COVID-19 have more than doubled in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Russia and Ukraine, WHO's Europe regional director Hans Kluge said in a statement.
The study was conducted on 39 individuals, of which 25 had taken both the doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, eight people had taken double dose of Pfizer jab, while six were unvaccinated.
The Omicron variant can survive longer than earlier versions of the coronavirus on plastic surfaces and human skin, Japanese researchers found in laboratory tests. Here are summaries of some recent studies on COVID-19.
India reported 306,064 new infections over the last 24 hours, the health ministry said, about an 8 percent decline from the average daily cases reported in the last four days. Deaths were 439, the lowest in five days.
Greece has been forced to implement the measures earlier than expected after the country on Tuesday announced a new record of 21,657 daily Covid-19 infections.
Omicron is behind rapid virus spikes in several countries, including those where it has already overtaken the previously-dominant Delta variant, the WHO said in its COVID-19 weekly epidemiological update.
Depending upon the seriousness of the COVID-19 situation, the Delhi government divided the curb plan, aiming to bring in a clearer picture of imposition and lifting of restrictions. Here are the details.
Earlier in the day, Arvind Kejriwal reviewed the Covid situation and the Omicron threat in Delhi in a meeting with his ministers and senior officers.
"Observe all precautions; don't let your guard down" the health ministry said during a review of COVID-19 status and preparedness in view of Omicron variant.
Amid a rise in coronavirus cases and the threat of the new variant of concern, Omicron, the DDMA had Wednesday directed district magistrates to ensure no Christmas and New Year gathering takes place in the national capital.
"We do have some data suggesting that rates of hospitalisation are lower," WHO's technical lead on COVID-19, Maria van Kerkhove, said in a briefing with media.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Tuesday that he would not introduce new restrictions in England before Christmas, but the situation remained extremely difficult and the government might need to act afterwards.
The Omicron variant of the coronavirus is spreading faster than the Delta variant and is causing infections in people already vaccinated or who have recovered from the COVID-19 disease, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said.
The total number of confirmed Omicron cases in the UK stands at 37,101, taking the overall COVID-19 infections tally to 82,886 on Sunday.
Just weeks ago, disease experts were predicting that countries would begin to emerge from the pandemic in 2022 after enduring a series of surges driven by the Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta variants. First among them would be populations with a significant amount of exposure to the coronavirus, through a combination of infections and vaccination.
Omicron multiplies faster in airways, slower in lung. Major differences in how efficiently Omicron and other variants of the coronavirus multiply may help predict Omicron's effects, researchers said on Wednesday.
"If you look at the time it takes for new cases to double in number, it seems to be doubling every two or three days. And that's massive. We're told that by mid-January, we should expect Omicron to be the new dominant variant in Europe," von der Leyen told the European Parliament, pointing to scientific data.
With these two cases — one from Latur and the other from Pune — the tally of patients infected with the newly discovered variant of the coronavirus rose to 20.
"Emerging data from South Africa suggests increased risk of reinfection with Omicron," Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters, adding that there was "also some evidence that Omicron causes milder disease than Delta."
The WHO, in its weekly epidemiological report, said more data was needed to assess the severity of disease caused by the Omicron variant and whether its mutations might reduce protection from vaccine-derived immunity.
The reverse repo rate - the interest rate banks earn for parking short-term funds at the RBI - is mostly expected to remain unchanged at 3.35 percent, but several economists have priced in a small increase as the central bank tries to normalise the gap between the lending and borrowing rate to pre COVID-19 levels.
Johannesburg, Dec 6 The recently identified Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 is associated with a substantial ability to evade immunity from prior COVI..
This has taken India's total tally of Omicron cases to 12 as of the evening of December 5. The total cases in Maharashtra now stand at 8.