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Coronavirus: North curbs New Year celebrations as Omicron spreads

file photo: illustration shows a test tube labelled "covid 19 test positive" in front of displayed words "omicron sars cov 2"

The north has announced a curbing of activities ahead of the New Year after detecting close to 30 cases of Omicron.

According to reports from the north, only up to 10 people will be allowed in homes while unvaccinated people will be barred from indoor and outdoor events.

For home gatherings it is recommended that visitors have a 72-hour PCR tests or a 24-hour rapid test.
At the same time, mass New Year events in schools, offices and government offices is prohibited.

‘Health minister’, Ali Pilli announced that 29 people were identified with the Omicron mutation, mainly young people and asymptomatic in most cases. Where there were symptoms, they were related to upper respiratory infections, he said.

Pilli said that the course of the variant could not be predicted, but that cases were expected to increase in the coming period. That’s why, he said, he was calling on people to avoid crowded places and to observe safety measures.

He also called for more vaccination. The north has announced a fourth dose with Pfizer’s mRNA technology following third doses. Most Turkish Cypriots first received two doses of the Chinese-developed Sinovac.

On Sunday, 196 positives were reported in the north, 159 of which are considered domestic, from 19,689 tests, while one person died of Covid, bringing their total to 137.

Of the new positives, most, 78, were found in Nicosia, 35 in Kyrenia, 21 in Famagusta, 3 in Morphou, 19 in Trikomo and 2 in the area of ​​Lefka.

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