Staunton, Oct. 1 – As the pandemic worsens and Russian courts confirm the power of employers to dismiss those who refuse to get vaccinated, some workers are saying that if they are left without income and support, they may turn to violence. One said that such actions “give rise to domestic extremism and terrorism” (regnum.ru/news/3386885.html).
The Kremlin continues to watch with concern the rising toll of the pandemic but officials promise there won’t be a new lockdown even though hospitalizations for coronavirus infections have risen by 25 percent over the last two weeks and the country set a new death record (887) for the fourth day in a row (regnum.ru/news/3386685.html, t.me/COVID2019_official/3615, regnum.ru/news/3386779.html and regnum.ru/news/3386785.html).
The pandemic continued to intensify in many places, with officials saying that Russia has suffered 24,100 death from the coronavirus over the last month, that hospitals are overwhelmed and that in some places, medical facilities have run out of medication and equipment to treat patients (regnum.ru/news/society/3379238.html, regnum.ru/news/3386761.html and nakanune.ru/news/2021/10/1/22623057/).
Many regions are tightening restrictions and even imposing mandatory vaccination programs, even as Moscow understates the level of school closings and shifts to distance learning. And the Russian capital, having seen the worst several days of this wave, appears set to re-impose more restrictions as well (regnum.ru/news/3386610.html, nakanune.ru/news/2021/10/1/22623059/ and vedomosti.ru/society/articles/2021/09/30/889210-techenie-sentyabrya).
But popular resistance to vaccinations and other restrictions appears to be growing or at least not declining as the regime hopes. Parents and some doctors, for example, are now arguing against shifting to distance learning in ever greater numbers (newizv.ru/news/society/01-10-2021/vyrastim-invalidov-i-nevrastenikov-assotsiatsiya-vrachey-vystupila-protiv-distanta).
Another indication of popular opposition to restrictions is that only 43 percent of Muscovites back testing for covid of all those who tell doctors they have the flu (superjob.ru/research/articles/113095/testirovanie-na-koronavirus-vseh-zabolevshih-orvi-odobryayut-4-iz-10-moskvichej/).
And the situation does not appear likely to improve anytime soon. According to a leading Russian infectious disease specialist, the current surge in infections, hospitalizations and deaths in Russia should continue until December and only then begin to ease (regnum.ru/news/3386340.html).
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