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Leader of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Delhi's chief minister Arvind Kejriwal (C) speaks to the media after paying his respects to an idol of Hindu sage Valmiki ahead of the state assembly elections at Ram Tirath Temple on the outskirts of Amritsar on January 1, 2022.
Indian politicians have received flak for holding big election rallies amid the pandemicImage: Narinder Nanu/AFP/Getty Images

Indian top official tests positive for COVID amid new spike

January 4, 2022

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tested positive for COVID-19 as India records a new spike in infections. Meanwhile, the US has reported a global record of new cases. DW has the latest.


New Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday, the same day India recorded its highest daily spike in coronavirus infections since September.

Kejriwal, the senior-most elected official in the territory of Delhi, said on Twitter that he had mild symptoms and was isolating at home. He urged those who had been in contact with him to isolate and get tested.

Kejriwal had addressed an election rally on Monday. Last year, mass election rallies were thought to have led to the deadly spread of the delta variant that overwhelmed hospitals, including in Delhi.

At the height of the second wave in April and early May, India was recording around 400,000 infections on a daily basis. 

Infections numbers significantly declined in the latter half of last year, but numbers have been steadily rising again over the past seven days.

India reported 37,379 new infections on Tuesday, its highest daily tally since September, the health ministry announced on Tuesday. The death toll rose by 124. 

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia also told reporters Tuesday that a weekend curfew would be imposed in the capital city to curb the spread of the omicron variant. He added that most offices would have to make half their employees work from home.

Here are the latest major developments on coronavirus from around the world:


China announced late on Monday that it had placed the city of Yuzhou in Henan province under lockdown over the weekend after the discovery of just three asymptomatic cases.

The lockdown reflects China's eagerness to keep outbreaks under control ahead of the Winter Olympics, which are to be held in Beijing and the nearby province of Hebei from February 4-20. 

Australia's antitrust regulator said on Tuesday it contacted suppliers of COVID-19 rapid antigen test kits to examine pricing pressures in the market, and would review any discrepancies and potential misconduct from the information it received from suppliers and the public.

The country is facing a shortage of antigen tests at the same time when calls for the government to make tests free are becoming louder. Australia reported 47,799 new infections on Tuesday.

The Philippines will expand COVID-19 restrictions in Manila from Wednesday to include more than 11 million people living near the capital city, the government said.

Daily infections are at a two-month high. The health department has warned of increasing infections since several local cases of omicron variant of the virus were detected. 


Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf, 75, and Queen Silvia, 78, have tested positive for COVID-19 virus, according to a palace statement on Tuesday.

The statement said the couple had only mild symptoms and were feeling well under the circumstances. Both are fully vaccinated with three doses, it said.

The country set a new daily record for COVID-19 cases on Decmeber 30, registering 11,507 cases, according to health agency data released on Tuesday.  
Germany ended strict rules for travelers entering the country from several nations, including the United Kingdom and South Africa, on Tuesday.

Under new rules, vaccinated travelers from countries labeled high-risk would no longer have to quarantine for two weeks, as they were previously required to do even if they were double-jabbed.

Germany recorded 30,561 new cases and 356 deaths, announced the Robert Koch Institute, the country's public health authority, on Tuesday. The seven-day incidence rose slightly, to 239.9 cases per 100,000 people over the past seven-day period.

The UK's minister for vaccines and public health, Maggie Throup, told Sky News on Tuesday that people who werehospitalized with COVID-19 in the country were broadly showing less severe symptoms than before.

"The numbers that are in hospital beds is about half what it was a year ago — and that just shows the power of the vaccine," she said.

The UK has been one of the countries worst hit by the omicron variant, with daily infections reaching record highs.  


The US reported more than a million new cases of COVID-19 on Monday — a global record — amid a new surge of infections fueled by the omicron variant of the coronavirus.

There were 1,080,211 new cases, according to data from Johns Hopkins Univeristy, which is double the number of daily cases reported the previous Monday. The rolling seven-day average was 486,600 cases per day as of Monday evening, the university said.

Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador says his country has enough doses of COVID vaccines to provide booster shots to its citizens.

"We have vaccines paid for until July of this year, everything that's needed for the booster," Lopez Obrador told reporters at a regular government news conference on Tuesday.

Brazil will suspend cruise lines from operations until January 21 due to rising cases on cruise ships, the Brazilian branch of the Cruise Lines International Association said Monday. Ships currently on sail would complete their tours as planned.

Brazil's health regulator Anvisa announced investigations into two cruise companies operating in Brazil for possible noncompliance with health regulations. 


Mozambique's President Filipe Nyusi and his wife Lsaura Nyusi logged positive rapid tests for COVID-19, the president's office said on Monday. The pair were asymptomatic, but decided to isolate while waiting for PCR test results, the office added in a statement.

Officials in Botswana also announced on Monday that President Mokgweetsi Masisi tested positive. 

Middle East

Israel's Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said Tuesday that an Israeli study indicated fourth coronavirus vaccinations were "safe" and increased antibodies "fivefold." The study reportedly used the BioNTech-Pfizer vaccine. 

Israel began giving fourth vaccine doses to people with weakened immunity on Friday, extending this to health workers and people over 60 on Monday, making it one of the first countries to do so.

tj,rm/msh (Reuters, AFP, AP)

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