Brazil Reopens Amid Looming Threat From Delta Variant

A health worker prepares a shot of the AstraZeneca vaccine for COVID-19 during a vaccination campaign for people over age 35 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, July 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Bruna Prado)

(AP) — As the number of coronavirus deaths starts to recede in Brazil, a renewed sense of optimism has taken over.

State governors are rolling back restrictions, soccer fans are starting to return to stadiums, and even the mayor of Rio de Janeiro has said the city’s famous New Year’s party is back on. But one question looms over these early signs of recovery:

What will happen as the delta variant of COVID-19 spreads through the mostly unvaccinated country, which already has the world’s second-highest death toll? Health Minister Marcelo Queiroga says getting more of the population vaccinated the best way to stop the variant, but he insists that Brazil must resume its economic activities.


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