'Major incident', declares London mayor Sadiq Khan amid Omicron threat

WION Web Team
London Published: Dec 18, 2021, 09:36 PM(IST)

London Mayor Sadiq Khan | Christmas shopping in London Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

The UK has been reporting a surge in coronavirus cases for the past three days amid the Omicron variant.

Amid a surge in Omicron variant cases in the capital, London mayor Sadiq Khan declared a "major incident" after 26,418 virus cases were reported in the last 24 hours.

"The surge in cases of the Omicron variant across our capital is hugely concerning, so we are once again declaring a major incident because of the threat of COVID-19 to our city," the London mayor said.

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The UK has been reporting a surge in coronavirus cases for the past three days amid the Omicron variant.

"It's right that London's key agencies work closely together to minimise the impact on our city, including helping to protect the vital vaccination programme," Sadiq Khan said as he raised the red flag over the capital.

Also Read: Omicron will outpace Delta in community transmission, says WHO

The London mayor had earlier declared a "major incident" on January 8 as the Alpha variant surged in the capital. Sadiq Khan said Omicron is now the dominant variant in London as he urged Londoners to take the booster dose.

On Friday, the UK had reported a record 93,045 new coronavirus cases as Scotland's first minister Nicola Sturgeon said Omicron had now become the dominant strain in the country. On Thursday the UK had reported 88,376 new coronavirus cases. 

Reports claim the UK reported over 90,000 COVID-19 in the last 24 hours and over 10,000 new Omicron cases were reported in the country. 

Watch: More than 27,000 Omicron cases in 91 countries

Authorities in Wales said nightclubs will close after December 26, a day after Christmas with social distancing norms set to be reintroduced.

The UK is one of the worst-hit countries due to the virus with over 11 million coronavirus cases and more than 147,000 fatalities since the pandemic took hold last year.

As the Omicron variant surged in the country, France declared it would ban non-essential travel to Britain. 

(With inputs from Agencies)

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