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Total COVID-19 cases pass 600,000 mark in Saudi Arabia with 5,628 new cases

Saudi Arabia has recorded another highest-ever number of new daily COVID-19 cases, with 5,628 new infections and two virus-related deaths reported on Friday, according to the Ministry of Health.

Of these cases, 287 are deemed critical.

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Case numbers have been climbing rapidly in recent weeks as the more-transmissible omicron variant spreads.

The daily recovery count on Friday touched 3,511, bringing the total recoveries to 558,546.

Saudi Arabia recorded its first case of the omicron variant in early December, thought to have come from an undisclosed north African country. The total number of cases in the Kingdom has now reached 604,972.

There are now 8,903 COVID-related deaths in the country.

Health authorities continue with the Kingdom's vaccination plan in effort to get the majority of the population vaccinated.

The country has updated its COVID-19 restrictions, announcing new fines of $266 (1,000 Saudi riyal) for those who break social distancing rules, and $266,000 (100,000 riyal) for repeat offenders.

The Kingdom also reintroduced social distancing measures at Mecca’s Grand Mosque and other public places in recent weeks.

Mask mandates in public places, indoors and outdoors, were also reintroduced.

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