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U.S. health officials said Sunday that while the omicron variant of the coronavirus is rapidly spreading throughout the country, early indications suggest it may be less dangerous than delta, which continues to drive a surge of hospitalizations.

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday voiced hope for a quick approval of the country's Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine by the World Health Organization, saying the move is essential for expanding its global supplies.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A Norwegian Cruise Line ship with at least 10 passengers and crew members infected with COVID-19 docked Sunday in New Orleans, where health officials said they were trying to disembark people without worsening the spread of the coronavirus illness.

LONDON (AP) — Britain's government tightened travel restrictions Saturday amid concerns about the spread of the omicron coronavirus variant, saying all travelers arriving in England will need to take a COVID-19 test before they board their flight.

The arrival of the omicron variant of the coronavirus in the U.S. has health officials in some communities reviving contact tracing operations in an attempt to slow and better understand its spread as scientists study how contagious it is and whether it can thwart vaccines.

WASHINGTON (AP) — More than 11,000 members of the Air National Guard and Reserve did not meet Thursday's deadline to get the COVID-19 vaccine, and could begin to face consequences if they don't get the mandated shots or receive an exemption.

PRAGUE (AP) — The outgoing Czech government is planning to order a vaccine mandate for people aged 60 and over and for some professional groups, Health Minister Adam Vojtech said on Friday. But it's unclear whether the measure will be enforced by his successor.

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