Britain, France and Australia have all announced record numbers of daily Covid-19 cases as the WHO warned yesterday that Omicron's dizzying spread increased the risk of newer, more dangerous variants emerging.

Britain crossed 200,000 cases for the first time yesterday, Australia posted almost 50,000 cases and France registered more than two lakh 70,000 cases, all three countries topping their previous records.

Omicron's rates of deaths and hospitalisations have been lower across the world, raising hopes the virus could be evolving into a relatively benign seasonal illness.

But the World Health Organization in Europe warned the soaring infection rates could have the opposite effect.

The more Omicron spreads, the more it transmits and the more it replicates, the more likely it is to throw out a new variant, according to WHO senior emergencies officer Catherine Smallwood. Omicron is lethal, it can cause death... maybe a little bit less than Delta, she added.

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