WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealanders celebrated Christmas in the warmth of mid-summer with few restrictions, in one of the few countries in the world largely untouched by the omicron variant of COVID-19. Ninety-five percent of adults in New Zealand have had at least one dose of the vaccine, making it one of the world’s most vaccinated populations. The only omicron cases that have been detected in New Zealand have been safely contained at the border. Australia is marking Christmas amid a surge of COVID-19 cases, worse than at any stage of the pandemic, which forced states to reinstate mask mandates and other preventative measures.
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