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WHO reports worldwide decline in new COVID cases

Men wearing face masks as a precaution against the coronavirus take photos as they visit to celebrate Chuseok holidays, the Korean version of Thanksgiving Day, at the Gyeongbok Palace in Seoul, South Korea, on September 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)
Men wearing face masks as a precaution against the coronavirus take photos as they visit to celebrate Chuseok holidays, the Korean version of Thanksgiving Day, at the Gyeongbok Palace in Seoul, South Korea, on September 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

The number of new COVID-19 cases continued to fall last week, with 3.6 million new cases reported globally, down from 4 million new infections the previous week, the World Health Organization says.

Last week’s drop marks the first substantial decline for more than two months, with falling COVID-19 cases in almost every world region.

In its latest update on the pandemic, the WHO says that there are major decreases in cases in two regions: a 22 percent fall in the Middle East and a 16% drop in Southeast Asia.

The UN health agency says that there are just under 60,000 deaths in the past week, a 7% decline.

It says that while Southeast Asia reported a 30% decrease in COVID-19 deaths, the Western Pacific region reported a 7% increase.

The most coronavirus cases were seen in the US, India, Britain, Turkey and the Philippines. The WHO says that the faster-spreading Delta variant has now been seen in 185 countries and is present in every part of the world.

The organization also revises its list of “variants of interest,” or those that it believes have the potential to cause big outbreaks. The WHO says that it is tracking the lambda and mu variants, which both arose in Latin America but have yet to cause widespread epidemics.

The WHO has previously said that in all countries where the Delta variant is circulating, it has become the predominant virus.

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