Oct 20, 2021 - World

Putin supports week at home for workers amid rising COVID-19 deaths

A serviceman of Russia's Emergencies Ministry wearing protective gear disinfects Moscow's Belorussky railway station on October 20, 2021
A serviceman of Russia's Emergencies Ministry wearing protective gear disinfects Moscow's Belorussky railway station on October 20, 2021. Photo: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty Images

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday supported a proposal to institute a non-working week to curb record high coronavirus deaths, AP reports.

Driving the news: Putin said Wednesday that he backs a non-working period, where workers will stay at home, beginning Oct. 30 and continuing through the following week, when four of seven days are already state holidays, per AP.

  • Russia on Wednesday totaled 1,028 COVID-19 deaths over 24 hours, the highest number since the pandemic began.
  • The non-working week could begin as early as Saturday in some regions where deaths from coronavirus are surging, Putin said.

The big picture: Coronavirus deaths have been rising for weeks in Russia, where vaccinations have lagged and the government has been reluctant to tighten restrictions.

  • Approximately 45 million Russians, or 32%, are fully vaccinated.
  • Until now, the Kremlin has ruled out a national lockdown and regional authorities have determined their own restrictions, with many of Russia’s regions restricting attendance at large public events and cutting attendance at theaters, restaurants and other venues.
  • In Moscow, public venues have been filled with people, prompting Mayor Sergei Sobyanin to announce Tuesday that unvaccinated people over 60 will be required to stay home, per AP.
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