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Coronavirus

Saudi Arabia breaks last COVID infection number to hit another highest-ever record

Published: Updated:

Saudi Arabia has recorded its highest-ever number of new daily COVID-19 cases, with 5,499 new infections and two virus-related deaths reported on Thursday, according to the Ministry of Health.

The previous peak was 5,362 daily cases, recorded on January 12, 2022.

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Case numbers have been climbing rapidly in recent weeks as the more-transmissible omicron variant spreads.

Saudi Arabia recorded its first case of the omicron variant in early December, thought to have come from an undisclosed north African country.

The Kingdom has now recorded a total of 599,044 COVID-19 cases since the beginning of the pandemic, and 8,901 deaths.

Country-wide vaccination is progressing steadily with over 50 percent of the population fully inoculated.

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.

Al Arabiya English's Marco Ferrari contributed to this report.

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