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Asia fights another COVID-19 flare-up, led by South Korea

Omicron subvariant seen driving global rise in cases, but death rate down

Mask-wearing pedestrians walk in a Seoul shopping district. South Korea has become the world's hot spot for coronavirus cases.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- The brunt of new coronavirus infections has shifted to Asia, as a renewed increase in cases globally appears fueled by the rise of omicron subvariant BA.2.

The seven-day rolling average of new COVID-19 cases worldwide jumped 20% over two weeks to reach 1.79 million on Thursday, data compiled by Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore shows. Cases remain below the peak seen Jan. 25, despite the rise in patients this month.

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