The United States and several countries in Europe recorded, on Tuesday, record numbers of infections with the Corona virus, while the World Health Organization warned of the emergence of more dangerous mutations in light of the rapid spread of the Omicron mutant around the world.

The United States has counted one million and 77 thousand new cases of the virus and an additional 1,700 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

For days, the United States has been recording new HIV infections at a rate of half a million infections daily, in light of the rapid spread of the Omicron mutant, which has now constituted nearly 95% of the total infections.

US President Joe Biden said, on Tuesday, that there will be a continuous rise in the number of infections due to the rapid spread of the Omicron mutant, which was first detected in South Africa last November.

The outbreak of this mutant of the Corona virus has increased pressure on hospitals, although the repercussions of the spread of this mutant seem - so far - less serious compared to the delta mutant, which was prevalent in the United States and most countries of the world.

And the senior adviser to combat epidemics in the United States, Anthony Fauci, had warned that the country is witnessing a near-vertical rise in HIV infections, and indicated that the wave may reach its peak after a few weeks.

Americans wait in their cars for a Corona test in Miami, Florida (European News Agency)

tidal wave in europe

Similar to the United States, regions in Europe are experiencing a massive wave of infections with the Corona virus amid the spread of the mutated Omicron.

In Britain, which recorded about 1.5 million cases of the virus in just one week, the authorities announced on Tuesday the registration of a national record with more than 200,000 infections in one day.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson called on his ministers to develop contingency plans to deal with the absence of the workforce from key sectors in the country due to the spread of the mutant Omicron.

Johnson said his country could weather the current wave of coronavirus without imposing stricter restrictions, but warned that the NHS was under increasing pressure.

And it was estimated that a quarter of workers in Britain may be absent during the coming weeks due to infection with the virus.

In turn, France recorded, on Tuesday, 270,000 cases of corona, in a new record, and despite the significant escalation of injuries, French President Emmanuel Macron ruled out imposing new restrictions, prior to a meeting of his government today, Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Italy recorded more than 170,000 cases of the Corona virus, in a new record, in addition to 259 new deaths, while infections in Greece exceeded 50 thousand for the first time since the beginning of the epidemic.

And in Sweden, it was announced that King Carl XVI Gustaf and his wife, Queen Silvia, had contracted the Corona virus, and a statement issued by the royal family said that they were suffering from mild symptoms.

Also in Europe, Turkey recorded 54,000 new cases of the virus and 137 additional deaths, on Tuesday.

Although several European countries recently tightened restrictions on gatherings, this did not help reduce the spread of the virus.

Outside of Europe, Australia recorded on Tuesday a record number of injuries, exceeding 50,000.


The epidemiological situation in the Arab world

In the Arab world, several countries are witnessing a noticeable increase in infections with the Corona virus.

On Tuesday, Lebanon recorded more than 5,000 injuries and 19 additional deaths.

On the same day, Jordan counted 2,300 new cases of the virus and 23 additional deaths, and the Jordanian Ministry of Health announced a few days ago that the number of infections with the Omicron mutant in the Kingdom exceeded 850.

In turn, some Gulf countries are witnessing an increase in infections with the Corona virus, with the outbreak of the mutated Omicron.

In Algeria, Minister of Health Abdel Rahman Benbouzid said that his country is controlling the epidemiological situation and is living stable in the outbreak of the Corona epidemic.

Since February 2020, Algeria has recorded more than 221,000 injuries and more than 6,000 deaths.

In neighboring Morocco, the Ministry of Health recorded the first death of the mutant Omicron in the country, while 7 other confirmed cases were admitted to the intensive care departments of hospitals.

Presenting the bi-monthly epidemiological situation in the country, the ministry confirmed a steady increase in the number of Omicron infections, and said that Morocco entered the third wave of the widespread mass spread of the virus three weeks ago.


WHO warns

Meanwhile, Catherine Smallwood, emergencies officer at the World Health Organization's office in Europe, warned that the sharp rise in omicron infections worldwide could increase the risk of new, more dangerous ones emerging.

In an interview with Al Jazeera, WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris said that the Omicron mutant causes milder symptoms than the previous mutant, because studies indicate that the virus remains in the throat and does not reach the lungs.

While the medical community is still unable to decipher the Omicron mutant, new strains of corona are breeding, adding to the confusing epidemiological scene.

The French magazine "MEDREXIF" for health sciences announced the discovery of a new strain in Marseille, southeast of France.

According to French scientists, analysis of the viral "genome" of the new mutant revealed the presence of 46 mutations, an atypical combination, and it was called "IHU".

It was recorded that 12 people were infected with the new mutation, but the French authorities have not officially announced it yet.

The World Health Organization has announced that the new mutant discovered in France did not pose a significant threat since it was first identified last November.

Despite the record outbreak of the omicron mutant, the data indicate that the new wave of infections with this mutant may not cause as many hospitalizations as the one the world witnessed during the outbreak of the most deadly "delta" mutant.

A British study conducted on more than a million infections with the two strains, omicron and delta, mutated from the Corona virus, proved that omicron infections that required hospitalization amounted to a third of delta infections.

The study concluded the vital role of vaccines in preventing Omicron, especially in the event of obtaining a third dose, as the risk of transfer to the hospital decreases by more than 80%, compared to individuals who did not receive a vaccination.

Keywords: