Indonesia reports 7,514 new cases as Japan, Philippines, S. Korea tighten entry from Britain over new virus variant

A man rides his bicycle past a coronavirus-themed mural with writing that reads, "Wear a mask," in Jakarta, Indonesia, Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2020. - AP

HONG KONG (Xinhua): Indonesia reported 7,514 new cases on Wednesday (Dec 23) as several Asia Pacific countries, including Japan, the Philippines and South Korea, tightened entry from Britain over a new virus variant.

The Covid-19 cases in Indonesia rose by 7,514 within one day to 685,639, with the death toll adding by 151 to 20,408, the Health Ministry said.

The Japanese government said it will tighten its border controls on arrivals from Britain with the new measures coming into effect from Thursday, in response to the new, highly transmissible variant of the coronavirus found there.

The Department of Health (DOH) of the Philippines reported 1,196 new confirmed cases of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) infection, bringing the total number in the country to 464,004.

The Philippines has imposed a ban on flights from Britain over fears of the transmission of a newly-detected coronavirus variant that is more infectious, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said.

South Korea's health authorities said the country will suspend flights coming from and heading to Britain till the end of this year to contain the spread of a new Covid-19 variant found in the European nation.

South Korea reported 1,092 more cases of Covid-19 as of midnight Tuesday compared to 24 hours ago, raising the total number of infections to 52,550.

The daily caseload rose above 1,000 in three days, hovering above 100 for 46 days since Nov. 8 due to small cluster infections in Seoul and its surrounding Gyeonggi province as well as imported cases.

Thailand reported 46 new confirmed cases of Covid-19, including 39 local infections and seven imported cases, bringing its total tally to 5,762.

The figure excluded infections in Myanmar migrant workers in the Samut Sakhon province, where the latest outbreak of the coronavirus originated, according to the Center for the Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) spokesman Taweesin Visanuyothin.

New Zealand reported seven cases of Covid-19 in managed isolation since the last media statement on Monday. There are no new cases in the community.

Among the seven imported cases, four cases came from the United States, one from South Africa, one from the Czech Republic, and one from Britain, according to the Ministry of Health.

India's Covid-19 tally rose to 10,099,066 as 23,950 new cases were registered during the past 24 hours, said the latest data from the health ministry. According to the data, the death toll mounted to 146,444 as 333 Covid-19 patients died since Tuesday morning.

A cluster of Covid-19 cases in the northern region of Sydney has seen the city split in two for Christmas Day, with those in the original outbreak area forced to remain in lockdown over the holiday.

The state of New South Wales (NSW), of which Sydney is the capital, recorded eight locally acquired cases of Covid-19, seven of which were linked to the original outbreak taking the total to 97.

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Covid-19 , strain , Indonesia , Thailand , South Korea


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