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A number of countries in the Asia Pacific region are being overwhelmed by their biggest coronavirus waves in months, as outbreaks fuelled by the delta variant race through populations with relatively low vaccination levels.

On Saturday, Thailand’s government reported 21,838 new coronavirus cases and 212 deaths, both single-day records that eclipsed the previous highs, set just a day earlier. Only 6% of Thailand’s people are vaccinated, according to New York Times data.

Australia recorded the most new cases since last August, the vast majority in the populous state of New South Wales, where a weekslong lockdown has failed to stem an outbreak that began in the Sydney area. The state reported 319 new infections and five deaths, and the state health minister, Brad Hazzard, said that the delta variant was spreading to new parts of the state in part because residents were continuing to socialize in groups in defiance of stay-at-home rules.

While vaccinations are rising in Australia, less than one-fifth of the population is fully vaccinated, one of the lowest rates among wealthy countries.

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Malaysia reported 20,889 new cases Friday, its third consecutive day of record numbers. The health minister warned against easing restrictions, a day after the prime minister pledged to relax them for vaccinated individuals. Just over 25 per cent of the population is fully vaccinated.

In the Philippines, the health ministry recorded more than 11,000 new infections, the highest daily total since April. The capital, Manila, on Friday imposed a two-week lockdown in the surrounding area, affecting some 13 million residents.

But with less than 10 per cent of that country fully vaccinated, the lockdown prompted a race for shots Thursday before it went into effect at midnight. Crowds jammed vaccination sites across Manila, and police were deployed to enforce social distancing.

The Philippines, which had managed to avoid the worst of the pandemic last year, has seen cases surge in 2021 as coronavirus variants have emerged and vaccine doses remain scarce. The country has now recorded more than 1.6 million cases and 28,000 deaths because of the virus, the second highest totals in Southeast Asia after Indonesia.

This content appears as provided to The Globe by the originating wire service. It has not been edited by Globe staff.