Myanmar’s COVID-19 Cases Continue to Rise

By The Irrawaddy 22 June 2021

Myanmar has reported nearly 600 new coronavirus cases, another 24-hour record since the February coup, as the country faces a fresh COVID-19 wave.

The regime-controlled Ministry of Health and Sports announced on Monday night that 595 cases had been registered in the preceding 24 hours along with three COVID-19 deaths.

Myanmar, which has been in chaos since the military coup, reported a surge in COVID-19 cases since late May when the junta relaxed restrictions and allowed pagodas, beaches and other public venues to reopen following their closure in April 2020 in an attempt to normalize the country.

Large clusters of infections have been reported in different cities.

In Yangon’s Hlegu Township, a cluster of COVID-19 cases was reported at the Mahawthahta school, which is privately run by Buddhist monks. Around 350 cases were registered by the school by June 16. Eleven positive tests were taken at a government high school in Kamayut Township after a teacher died of COVID-19.

Out of 74 cases reported in Zabuthiri Township, Naypyitaw, on June 19, 64 infections occurred at a monastery.

Health ministry official Dr. Khin Khin Gyi warned the public to keep up preventive measures against COVID-19 as the country has detected three “highly transmissible and more severe” coronavirus variants: Alpha, Delta and Kappa.

“We need to tighten our guard as the new variants have a high speed of transmissibility and infection. We are also warning of a higher number of hospital admissions and an increase in deaths,” she said.

The regime has imposed stay-at-home orders on eight townships: Tamu and Kale in Sagaing Region; Tonzang, Hakha, Tedim, Falam and Thantlang in Chin State; and Bago Region’s Letpadan.

A stay-at-home order was imposed on Phyu Township in Bago Region on Monday.

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