The Omicron variant of Covid-19 is dangerous - and especially so for those who have not been vaccinated against the disease, the World Health Organisation said Wednesday.
The WHO said the huge global spike in cases was being driven by Omicron but insisted there should be no surrender to the variant of concern.
"While Omicron causes less severe disease than Delta, it remains a dangerous virus, particularly for those who are unvaccinated," WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a press conference.
"We mustn't allow this virus a free ride or wave the white flag, especially when so many people around the remain unvaccinated.
"In Africa, over 85 percent of people are yet to receive a single dose of vaccine. We can't end the acute phase of the pandemic unless we close this gap."
Tedros wanted every country to have 10 percent of their population vaccinated by the end of September 2021, 40 percent by the end of December, and 70 percent by mid-2022.
But 90 countries had still not reached 40 percent, 36 of them still short of the 10-percent mark, he said