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As coronavirus case numbers continue to drop in the United States, many other parts of the world are still struggling to contain infections — including countries in Europe.

Europe has emerged as the only major region to record an uptick in cases and deaths over the past week, according to the World Health Organization — driving the first such global increase in two months. The U.N. health agency said European case numbers rose by 18 percent, and deaths by 14 percent, over the seven-day period, with 1.6 million new cases and 21,000 deaths.

On the other side of the Atlantic, the White House’s coronavirus response coordinator indicated that the Biden administration could be flexible as it enforces the president’s executive order requiring federal workers and employees of government contractors to be vaccinated.

“To be clear, we’re creating flexibility within the system. We’re offering people multiple opportunities to get vaccinated. There is not a cliff here,” Jeff Zients said.

Here’s what to know

  • Nearly half of teens said the pandemic had a negative impact on their academics.
  • Up to 12,000 Air Force personnel have rejected orders to get fully vaccinated against the coronavirus despite a Pentagon mandate, posing a first major test for military leaders.
  • The Russian capital began its strictest lockdown since June 2020 on Thursday, as hospitals in Moscow confront a rising wave of cases and deaths.
  • The 2019 Honda Civic that kicked off a used-car auction earlier this month would have been nothing special before the pandemic. But the online bidding quickly became “bananas.”
  • What we know about fluvoxamine, the antidepressant drug that shows promise in treating covid-19.