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Australia’s reopening plans in doubt after Omicron cases
Two people who arrived in Sydney from southern Africa tested positive on Sunday for the newly identified variant as officials ordered 14-day quarantine for citizens returning from nine African countries. Morrison said “it is a bit too early” to reinstate two-week mandatory hotel quarantine for foreign travellers, urging people to remain calm as data had not yet fully determined the severity, transmissibility and vaccine resistance of the Omicron strain
Barbados to become a republic, replacing British queen
Barbados is about to cut ties with the British monarchy, but the legacy of a sometimes brutal colonial past and the pandemic’s impact on tourism pose major challenges for the Caribbean island as it becomes the world’s newest republic. Famed for its beaches and love of cricket, Barbados will this week replace its head of state, Queen Elizabeth II, with her current representative, Governor General Sandra Mason.
Coal mine collapses in Jharkhand’s Bokaro
- Four villagers are feared to be trapped after an abandoned coal mine of Bharat Coking Coal Limited (BCCL) collapsed during illegal mining of coal in Bokaro district on Sunday.
- When the rescue team of Bharat Coking Coal Limited, which came earlier to rescue the four people trapped in the debris inside the mine for more than 24 hours, could not rescue the trapped victims, a 25-member team of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) from Ranchi arrived at the spot.
Over 135 crore vaccine doses provided to states, UTs so far
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Sunday said that more than 135 crore (1,35,94,88,700) COVID-19 vaccine doses have been provided to states and union territories so far through free of cost channel and through direct state procurement category, said a press release.
Australian shares hit near two-month low on variant concerns
Australian shares dropped more than 1% to hit a near two-month low on Monday, extending losses to a second straight day, as concerns over the cases of coronavirus’ Omicron variant hitting economic recovery sparked a broad sell-off. The S&P/ASX 200 index fell as much as 1.36% to 7,180.3, its lowest level since Oct. 1, after a 1.73% drop on Friday.