Omicron a further threat to Delta: Brazil takes action and cancels New Year’s Eve Celebrations. “…decision was taken “with sadness”, but that organisers “respect the science”. Ireland is but 5.5 mn but to look at the impact of COVID-19 in Brazil is a true eye opener to what this Pandemic is about. “The South American country has now registered a total of 615,400 coronavirus deaths and 22,129,409 confirmed cases.”

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COVID-19: Rio cancels New Year’s Eve celebrations amid spread of Omicron variant

Announcing the move on Twitter, the mayor of the Brazilian city Eduardo Paes said the decision was taken “with sadness”, but that organisers “respect the science”.

Saturday 4 December 2021 15:56, UK

People wearing protective masks walk past a graffiti
Image: The Brazilian city’s New Year’s celebrations have been cancelled for the second year running

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Rio has cancelled its world-famous New Year’s Eve celebrations as the Omicron COVID variant spreads around the world.

Announcing the move on Twitter, the mayor of the Brazilian city Eduardo Paes said the decision was taken “with sadness”, but that organisers “respect the science”.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, people would travel from all over the world to join millions of revellers on Copacabana Beach to experience the iconic celebrations.

The scrapping of the event for the second year running comes as countries around the world wrestle with the transmission of the worrying new Omicron strain, first identified in South Africa.

Latest coronavirus updates from the UK and around the world

RJ - Rio de Janeiro - 12/03/2021 - RIO DE JANEIRO, COLLECTIVE GOVERNOR CLAUDIO CASTRO - Eduardo Paes (Democrats) Mayor of the city of Rio de Janeiro during a conference with the Governor of the State of Rio de Janeiro Claudio Castro (PSC) grants press conference at the Guanabara Palace on Friday (12) to talk about measures to combat and prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the state. Photo: Thiago Ribeiro / AGIF
Image: Eduardo Paes says the important thing is ‘vaccinating and saving lives’. Pic: AP

Latest official figures show Brazil registered 221 coronavirus deaths on Friday and 10,627 additional cases.

The South American country has now registered a total of 615,400 coronavirus deaths and 22,129,409 confirmed cases.

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