COVID-19 cases in the United Arab Emirates continue to soar amid fears over the highly contagious omicron variant, with officials reporting a 50 percent increase in new cases in 24 hours.
The Ministry of Health and Prevention said on Tuesday that a total of 452 new COVID-19 cases were detected over the previous 24 hours – up from 301 cases the day before, an increase of 51 percent.
It also announced two more deaths linked to COVID-19. A further 198 people have recovered from the virus.
A total of 744,890 cases of COVID-19 have been detected in the UAE since the start of the pandemic, while 2,154 people have dies from the virus.
Tuesday’s figures are the highest since September 25 when the country reported 321 positive cases.
The country has not specified whether any of the new cases were of the omicron variant, though it announced that it reported its first case of the new, highly transmissible variant on December 1
The UAE cautioned against over-the-top celebrations for Christmas and the New Year.
It also restricted entry into all government institutions only to people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 starting from January 3.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Saturday that the omicron variant is spreading rapidly, even in countries with high immunity.
The variant is believed to be more transmissible than the delta variant, the WHO said.