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The European office of the World Health Organisation (WHO) is warning against taking the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic too lightly in the face of declining infection rates in Europe.
The number of weekly cases in the region had declined 60 per cent within one month from 1.7 million to some 685,000.
The WHO Regional Director, Hans Kluge said during a press conference on Thursday that “this progress is fragile. We have been here before.
“Let us not make the same mistakes that were made this time in 2020, that resulted in a resurgence of COVID-19 and saw our health systems, communities, and economies.
“Once again, bear the full force of this pandemic.
“We learned our lesson the hard way.
“We are heading in the right direction but need to keep a watchful eye on a virus that has claimed the lives of nearly 1.2 million people in this region,’’ Kluge added.
The WHO official emphasized that the pandemic was not over yet and that the summer had the potential for another rise in cases due to expected increases in mobility, activities, and gatherings.
Kluge also emphasized a need for remaining cautious, despite the fact that vaccination rates were rising.
“Vaccines may be a light at the end of the tunnel – but we cannot be blinded by that light,” he said.
The WHO counts a total of more than 50 countries in the European region, including places such as Turkey, Russia, and Ukraine.
In these countries, there have been a total of almost 54 million infections so far, including some 1.13 million related deaths.