Staunton, Sept. 15 – The announcement that Vladimir Putin has gone into self-isolation has sparked speculation that Russia may face a new lockdown after the elections to fight the pandemic and that the Kremlin has not been fully open about what is going on with the Russian president’s health.
That has forced Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov to deny there are any discussions at present about a new lockdown and to insist Putin’s health is fine but that doctors are being overly cautious. He says that Putin will continue to work normally but won’t appear as much in public (regnum.ru/news/3370886.html and aif.ru/politics/russia/peskov_uhod_na_samoizolyaciyu_nichego_ne_menyaet_v_rabote_putina).
Russian officials today announced that they have registered 18,985 new cases of infection and 798 new deaths from the coronavirus over the last 24 hours as the pandemic continues across the country, hitting several places that had seen improvements last week hard again (t.me/stopcoronavirusrussia/5737 and regnum.ru/news/society/3369923.html).
More Russian schools and universities are going to distance learning or setting up quarantines either with no end date specified or at least until after the elections when polls will take place in some school buildings (regnum.ru/news/3371339.html and regnum.ru/news/3371325.html).
On the vaccine front, Russian officials reported that more than 39 million Russians have now been completely vaccinated, that Belgorod Oblast has the highest percentage of the population vaccinated, and that polls show almost 85 percent of Russians want all migrants vaccinated whether they want to get the shots or not (regnum.ru/news/3370783.html, regnum.ru/news/society/3369923.html and regnum.ru/news/3370908.html).
Meanwhile, in other pandemic-related developments in Russia today,
· Russian officials are urging people to get their flu shots lest they come down with flu and the coronavirus infection at the same time, a combination whose impact is as yet unknown (regnum.ru/news/3370809.html).
· Israel says it will recognize Russian vaccination certificates by the end of this year (sovsekretno.ru/news/izrail-sobiraetsya-priznat-rossiyskie-sertifikaty-o-vaktsinatsii-do-kontsa-2021-goda/).
· A linguistics professor in St. Petersburg has assembled a dictionary of new words and phrases that have entered the Russian language because of the pandemic (neva.today/news/slovar-kovidnyh-antiposlovic-karantinok-sozdali-v-peterburge-226953/ and nazaccent.ru/content/36677-professor-spbgu-sobral-slovar-antiposlovic-karantinok.html).
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