Abu Dhabi reimplements distance learning amid COVID-19 surge

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The UAE’s capital Abu Dhabi will implement distance learning for the first two weeks of the new school term as a precautionary measure amid a surge in coronavirus cases in the country.

The decision applies to all public and private schools in the emirates, including training institutes, colleges, and universities, the Abu Dhabi Media Office announced on Tuesday.

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Abu Dhabi also updated its procedures to enter the emirate by requiring a green pass on al-Hosn app for vaccinated individuals and a negative PCR test result received within 96 hours for those who are not vaccinated effective from December 30.

The UAE reported 1,846 COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, 632 recoveries and one death.

Cases in the Gulf country have been steadily rising at slow rates in recent months, but the last time the number of daily infections was this high was at the end of June when the UAE reported 2,184 cases on June 29.

The country has not specified whether any of the new cases where of the omicron variant, though it announced that it reported its first case of the new, highly transmissible variant on December 1.

The UAE remains one of the top countries in the world when it comes to vaccination rates and has managed to report low numbers of cases and deaths in recent months while remaining open to business.

The UAE has reported in November that 100 percent of the population has received one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 90.3 percent have been fully vaccinated.

The Gulf country also made COVID-19 vaccine booster shots available for everyone over the age of 18 amid rising concerns over omicron.

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