Saudi Arabia records 4,652 new COVID-19 cases in 24 hours, two deaths

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Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health has reported 4,652 COVID-19 cases and two virus-related deaths in the last 24 hours.

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Case numbers in recent days have neared the all-time high of 4,919, recorded in June 2020.

A total of 8,897 people have now died of COVID-19 in Saudi Arabia.

There were also 2,051 recoveries in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of recoveries to 549,558.

Saudi Arabia’s far-reaching vaccination program has seen 52,901,992 doses of the vaccine administered.

The country recently updated its COVID-19 restrictions, announcing new fines of $266 (1,000 Saudi riyal) for those who break social distancing rules, and $266,000 (100,000 riyal) for repeat offenders.

The Kingdom also reintroduced social distancing measures at Mecca’s Grand Mosque in recent weeks.

Mask mandates in public places, indoors and outdoors, were also reintroduced.

Saudi Arabia recorded its first case of the omicron variant on December 1, thought to have come from an undisclosed North African country.

COVID-19 case numbers have been soaring to unprecedented levels worldwide as the more contagious omicron variant spreads.

Global deaths, however, have remained far below the January 2021 peak, as the omicron variant presents less severe symptoms than other forms of the virus.

Neighboring United Arab Emirates recorded 2,562 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, according to the country’s health ministry.

The UAE also announced its first case of the omicron variant in early December.

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