Thailand reports first Omicron variant

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Thailand has reported on Friday, its first domestic cluster of coronavirus infections in Kalasin province in north-eastern Thailand.

According to the country’s COVID-19 task force spokesman Apisamai Srirangsan, “From the Kalasin cluster, there are 21 new infections.

“The infections stem from a couple who travelled from Belgium through the country’s Test and Go scheme that waived quarantine for vaccinated arrivals.

“Both had tested negative for infections before travelling and after arrival in Thailand in early December.

“By Dec 15, they started having symptoms and tested positive and were later confirmed to have the Omicron variant,” she said.

The announcement comes as Thailand’s capital city Bangkok cancelled government-sponsored New Year activity, including midnight prayers.

Fireworks and countdown events organised by malls were still going forward and would require proof of vaccination and antigen test results.

So far, Thailand has had 205 infections from the Omicron variant, mostly in foreign arrivals. Of that number, 25 people were infected from those coming from aboard.

Other clusters are being investigated in the country’s south, senior health Supakit Sirilak told a separate news briefing.

Thailand has reported a total of 2.2 million confirmed infections and 21,528 deaths. About 62 per cent of an estimated 72 million people living in the country have received two doses of vaccinations.

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