- Sputnik International, 1920
Omicron COVID Strain
The new COVID variant was initially detected in South Africa and Botswana and sparked major concerns due to its high number of mutations (32). The WHO dubbed the strain Omicron and warned it may prove to be more transmissible and dangerous than other coronavirus variants.

Bye Bye, Mask and Covid Pass: Boris Johnson Announces End of Plan B Restrictions in England

© REUTERS / HENRY NICHOLLSPeople walk along the South Bank, as the Houses of Parliament are seen at a distance, in London, Britain, January 16, 2022
People walk along the South Bank, as the Houses of Parliament are seen at a distance, in London, Britain, January 16, 2022 - Sputnik International, 1920, 19.01.2022
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LONDON (Sputnik) – UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced on Wednesday the end of the so-called Plan B implemented in England since December to prevent the spreading of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.
Addressing Parliament, Johnson said that the working from home guidance, the requirement to wear face masks and the use of COVID passports in some settings would be dropped next week.
"This government got the toughest decisions right," the prime minister told lawmakers, adding that the government "will trust the judgment of the British people" when it comes to social distancing measures and face mask covering to prevent the spreading of the virus.
The so-called Plan B was originally rolled out in December to combat the spread of the highly transmissible variant.
Reacting to the announcement, the leader of the Labour Party, Keir Starmer, called it an attempt to distract the public’s opinion on the crisis the prime minister is facing following revelations that he and his staff in Downing Street held parties during the COVID-19 lockdown.
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