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Russia may meet COVID-19 inoculation targets by autumn — top sanitary doctor

The program of inoculating Russians against the coronavirus may meet its target figures by autumn when a new increase in incidence is possible, Head of the Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing Anna Popova said on Thursday.

“We would like this [vaccination of 60% of adult Russians – TASS] to happen by autumn for several reasons: first of all, the country has the relevant capabilities and, secondly, as we said earlier, by autumn there will be an increase [in incidence],” she said in an interview with the Komsomolskaya Pravda radio station.

At the same time she recommended getting vaccinated as soon as possible without putting it off until autumn.

COVID-19 situation in EU

The situation with the coronavirus infection in the European Union is “highly unstable,” the head sanitary inspector said.

“In the European Union it [the coronavirus situation – TASS] is highly unstable. You can see that there are short periods when it stabilizes or turns the corner and there are peaks. <…> Right now an aggravation is observed. And more than half of the EU countries are at the stage of growing incidence, it is on the rise again,” she told the Komsomolskaya Pravda radio station.

According to the latest global statistics, about 133.2 mln people have been infected worldwide and over 2.8 mln deaths have been reported. To date, 4,614,834 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 4,239,038 patients having recovered from the disease. Russia’s latest data indicates 101,845 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.

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Imported infections

Almost 25,000 Russians infected with the coronavirus have returned from abroad since the beginning of 2021. This is approximately 1% of all returnees over this period, Anna Popova said.

“Since the beginning of this year <…> a rather large number of people <…> have returned to the Russian Federation, of whom <…> 24,740 tested positive – 1%,” she told the Komsomolskaya Pravda.

A gradual lifting of restrictions on international travel and flights began on August 1. Back then the Russian government permitted airlines to resume air service to the UK, Tanzania and Turkey in a limited format. To date, international flights have been resumed to Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, India, Kazakhstan, Vietnam, Greece, Singapore, Ethiopia, Qatar, Kyrgyzstan, South Korea, Egypt, the UAE, Turkey, Switzerland, Tanzania, Serbia, Finland, Japan, the Maldives, Cuba and the Seychelles. Also, since April 1, Russia has formally resumed air service with Germany, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Syria and Sri Lanka.

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