Factbox-Latest on the worldwide spread of the coronavirus
(Reuters) - The Netherlands went into lockdown on Sunday and the possibility of more COVID-19 restrictions being imposed ahead of the Christmas and New Year holidays loomed over several European countries as the Omicron variant spreads rapidly.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
* Britain reported a surge in Omicron cases on Saturday, while the country's health minister on Sunday declined to rule out the chance of further restrictions before Christmas.
* Germany ruled out a Christmas lockdown but warned a fifth COVID-19 wave could no longer be stopped. It will also impose quarantine on travellers from Britain from midnight on Monday and require a negative COVID-19 test for entry into the country.
* Italy is considering new measures to avoid a surge in infections during the holidays, local newspapers reported.
* The Kremlin is convinced that the World Health Organization will recognise Russia's flagship Sputnik V vaccine within a few months, the Interfax news agency cited Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov as saying.
* Ukraine has detected its first case of the Omicron variant.
* Japan will extend a curb on foreigners entering the country beyond year-end, the Yomiuri newspaper reported, citing anonymous government sources.
* Thailand's public health ministry will propose reinstating mandatory quarantine for foreign visitors, while the country reported its first case of local Omicron transmission.
* Australian authorities resisted calls to make masks mandatory indoors and limit the numbers of patrons at Sydney venues, even as new infections lingered near records.
* Beijing said it is advising residents not to leave town during a major holiday season in early 2022.
* Two years into the pandemic, the United States is confronting another dark winter, with the Omicron variant threatening to worsen an already dangerous surge of cases.
* U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker said they both tested positive for COVID-19 and were experiencing mild symptoms.
* Peru has detected its first cases of Omicron.
* A U.S. appeals court reinstated a nationwide vaccine-or-testing COVID-19 mandate for large businesses, which covers 80 million American workers, prompting opponents to rush to the Supreme Court to ask it to intervene.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
* Israel is in the midst of a fifth COVID-19 wave due to the Omicron variant, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said.
* Iran has confirmed its first case of Omicron, while authorities urged Iranians to get their booster doses in the Middle East's worst-hit country.
* Omicron has been reported in 89 countries and the number of cases is doubling in 1.5 to 3 days in areas with community transmission, the WHO said.
* Asian shares fell to one-year lows on Monday and oil prices slid nearly 3% as surging Omicron COVID-19 cases triggered tighter curbs in Europe and threatened to swamp the global economy into the New Year.
(Compiled by Devika Syamnath; Edited by Shounak Dasgupta)
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