By DAVID RISING
BANGKOK (AP) — The world is on the verge of recording its 6 millionth official COVID-19 death, underscoring that the pandemic is far from over. It’s another tragic reminder about the deadliness of the pandemic even as masks are dropping, travel is resuming and businesses are reopening around the globe. Remote Pacific islands are just now grappling with their first outbreaks. Hong Kong is battling its worst outbreak and clinging to mainland China’s “zero-COVID” strategy. Eastern Europeans battling a spike in deaths are now facing a surge of refugees from war-torn Ukraine. And the United States is nearing the mark of 1 million deaths on its own.