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COVID deaths in Russia hit new record after most restrictions were lifted

MOSCOW – Coronavirus deaths in Russia hit a new record today and new confirmed cases remain high two days after a nine-day jobless spell ended in most parts of the country.

The state coronavirus task force reports 1,211 deaths from COVID-19, the highest daily death toll from the pandemic and 39,160 new cases. The task force has reported around 40,000 cases and more than 1,100 deaths every day since the end of October.

Russian President Vladimir Putin last month ordered many Russians not to work between October 30 and November 7. He allowed regional governments to extend the number of days off if necessary, but only five Russian regions have done so.

Other regions have restricted access to restaurants, theaters and other public places to people who have been fully vaccinated, recovered from COVID-19 in the past six months, or tested negative in the previous 72 hours.

The daily tally of new cases and deaths from COVID-19 remained high throughout the non-work period. Kremlin officials argued on Monday that it was too early to say whether the measure had the desired effect.

The fall in the number of infections and deaths in Russia comes amid low vaccination rates, lax public attitudes towards taking precautions and the government’s reluctance to tighten restrictions.

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