WHO warns that new virus variant poses ‘very high’ risk

  • People stand holding shopping bags on Regent Street in London, Monday. Countries around the world slammed their doors shut again to try to keep the new omicron variant at bay Monday, even as more cases of the mutant coronavirus emerged and scientists raced to figure out just how dangerous it might be. In Britain, mask-wearing in shops and on public transport will be required, starting Tuesday. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

GENEVA — The World Health Organization warned Monday that the global risk from the omicron variant is “very high” based on the early evidence, saying the mutated coronavirus could lead to surges with “severe consequences.”