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Today’s headlines: Omicron will not peak for six weeks; socialising levels perfect for variant, warns WHO chief

Omicron will not peak for six weeks

The Omicron wave of Covid-19 will not peak for another six weeks and threatens to overwhelm hospitals into February and March.

Mike Ryan: ‘Irish socialising levels are perfect breeding ground for Omicron rise’

The threat of lockdown is not over as the rapidly spreading Omicron variant risks crippling the health system here, Dr Mike Ryan, the head of the World Health Organisation’s Health Emergencies Programme, has warned.

New Christmas Covid restrictions: everything you need to know

Here are the details you may have missed and everything you need to know from the latest Government announcement.

‘We have already taken one for Team Ireland’

Restaurateur Padraic O’Kane has not slept a wink since news emerged on Thursday night that the Government was considering imposing a curfew on all bars and restaurants to combat the rapid spread of the Omicron variant of Covid-19.

Lottery TV ads will be banned in new bill for gambling

The National Lottery’s TV adverts depicting scenes of affluence and prosperity are to be banned under strict new advertising laws for the gambling industry.

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Maxwell declines to take stand as defence rests case

Ghislaine Maxwell declined to take the stand yesterday at her New York trial on sex trafficking charges.

Schools are sending books home for holidays ‘just in case’

Teachers are leaving little to chance as schools prepare to close for Christmas and are getting pupils to take their books home with them in case there is a delayed reopening in the new year.

Covid and planning wrangles blamed for broadband plan missing new target

The National Broadband Plan will miss its latest target of 60,000 homes by the end of January and will not catch up until at least 2023, company executives have said.

Lasting memory of late friend proves a winning image for Matthew

It was a quick snap before a cup of tea with a friend who has since died that proved to be the worthy winning entry in our readers’ photographic competition.

Fianna Fáil’s ‘charity’ lottery licence faces legal challenge

A court case is being taken by the whistleblower who revealed Tánaiste Leo Varadkar’s GP contract scandal. Taoiseach Micheál Martin’s party is running its €500,000 raffle with a permit reserved for charities.

Taoiseach announces Christmas restrictions: Pubs and restaurants to close at 8pm

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