Staunton, July 23 – The Russian government has not made getting vaccination mandatory but it has taken steps to punish those who don’t, including requiring businesses to give paid leave for the vaccinated but unpaid leave for those who refuse to get the shots (mintrud.gov.ru/docs/1876).
Not surprisingly, such arrangements have angered those who don’t want to get the shots who see them as a return to Soviet practices when what was declared to be voluntary was in fact mandatory (kasparov.ru/material.php?id=60FA559B37CCB). That pattern has hit adults but not yet children. However, with the approach of the reopening of schools that will change.
Moscow officials have announced that they do not intend to require pupils to be vaccinated, but if the schools become super spreaders and infection and death rates go up, they will be forced to choose between closing schools or imposing a de facto vaccination requirement (sovsekretno.ru/news/v-rf-ne-sobirayutsya-obyazyvat-detey-vaktsinirovatsya-ot-koronavirusa/).
Today, Russian government officials reported registering 23,811 new cases of infection and 796 new deaths from the coronavirus over the last 24 hours as the situation improved in some places but deteriorated sharply in others (t.me/COVID2019_official/3349).
In Moscow where the infections eased slightly, Mayor Sergey Sobyanin said that the city had passed the peak of the third wave (regnum.ru/news/3329033.html), but in some places, there continued to be spikes with the number of cases rising by eight times or more (regnum.ru/news/society/3324376.html).
The Russian government announced it would increase the number of flights to and from Minsk as of August 1 and resume direct flights to Egypt as of August 9 (regnum.ru/news/3329069.html and regnum.ru/news/3329072.html).
On the vaccine front, vaccination rates continued to fall in some places despite the government’s promotion of the shots (regnum.ru/news/3328860.html) and resistance to shots spread (sibreal.org/a/zhiteli-yugry-prognali-medikov-priletevshih-za-bolnym-covid-19/31373520.html).
But Moscow city officials reported that they have succeeded in inoculating a million of the capital’s elderly (https://regnum.ru/news/3329068.html and ura.news/news/1052495688).
Meanwhile, the Moscow trial of opposition figures that has come to be known as “the sanitation case” because the authorities are charging protesters with violating pandemic restrictions. Nine people are in the dock, and the case is attracting widespread attention (novayagazeta.ru/articles/2021/07/23/svideteli-masochnogo-rezhima).
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