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Covid-19: Omicron keeps spreading at lightning speed

The United Kingdom has been the hardest hit in the region thus far, with nearly 25,000 confirmed Omicron cases as of Saturday.

Health officials across the continent are bracing for a wave of infections.

On Friday, additional restrictions were announced in Germany, the Republic of Ireland, and the Netherlands in an attempt to curb the wave.

According to the most recent EU figures, Europe has already seen over 89 million cases and 1.5 million Covid-related deaths.

However, Germany's Health Minister Karl Lauterbach told reporters on Friday that the country "must prepare for a challenge that we have not yet seen in this form," while the country's public health agency designated France, Norway, and Denmark as "high risk" due to rising infection rates in those countries.

On Saturday, Germany's regional health ministers urged Berlin to impose stricter rules on arrivals from the United Kingdom.

In Ireland, where the new variant is responsible for one-third of new cases, Taoiseach Micheál Martin forecast "infections at a rate far in excess of anything we have seen to date."

The warnings came as the UK reported a record number of Covid infections - more than 93,000 - for the third day in a row, largely due to Omicron.

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