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Saved Stories – None: Window on Eurasia — New Series: Rosstat Monthly Death Figures Again Suggest Moscow Underreporting Coronavirus Mortality

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Paul Goble
            Staunton, September 4 – Rosstat has now released mortality figures for Russia in July which show that 10,079 people by its calculations died from coronavirus infections. That figure is significantly greater than the 4522 that the government reported in its daily briefings (rosstat.gov.ru/folder/313/document/98189).
            This extends a pattern since the beginning of the pandemic in which Rosstat is reporting far more deaths from the pandemic than the government office responsible for such reports is. There are differences in the ways these numbers are compiled but the yarning difference between the two raises more questions about Russian figures.
            However that may be, the Russian office responsible for the daily reports said that 5110 more Russians had been infected and 121 more people had died from it over the last 24 hours, bringing those totals respectively to 1,015,105 and 17,649 respectively (t.me/COVID2019_official/1419).
            The British medical journal, The Lancet, published the official results of the first two phases of test of the Russian coronavirus vaccine (regnum.ru/news/3054396.html). Russian officials played up international findings that children often do not infect adults (regnum.ru/news/3054545.html).
            Russian officials say that mass vaccinations will begin in Moscow September 10-13 and inoculation of most of the country will be completed over 10 to 12 months (regnum.ru/news/3054185.html and regnum.ru/news/3054528.html). Senior officials like Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu are getting the vaccine early (regnum.ru/news/3054387.html).
            The health ministry published a list of the groups which will be given priority – medical workers and teachers, police, draftees, service workers and school pupils older than 18 (regnum.ru/news/3053858.html).And the Russian government is urging the Duma to exclude the coronavirus vaccine from fines on those who don’t vaccines (ura.news/news/1052448366).
            The health ministry also announced that it was recommending for use a new drug against the coronavirus (regnum.ru/news/3054254.html).  A problem has arisen with flu shots: people in the capitals are clustering around where they are being offered and thus creating the potential for a spread of the coronavirus (regnum.ru/news/3054255.html and regnum.ru/news/3053906.html).
            Openings and closings continued as the pandemic ebbed and flowed across Russia (regnum.ru/news/society/3051649.html). Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin argued in his blog that he and his officials had done a good job in combatting the pandemic and that critics of their work were failing to recognize that fact (echo.msk.ru/blog/ssobyanin/2703757-echo/).
            Coronavirus figures ticked up the last two days, prompting officials to deny that they were about to close things down and urging Russians not to be upset by small changes in the numbers (newsru.com/russia/04sep2020/tgolikova.html, regnum.ru/news/3054592.htmland regnum.ru/news/3054551.html).
            Advertising revenues, a key measure of economic activity, fell by 22 percent in the second quarter compared to a year earlier (akarussia.ru/press_centre/news/id9319).
            Meanwhile, in other pandemic-related developments from Russia today,
·         Moscow has decided to delay making any final decision on which foreign students will be allowed to attend Russian universities this academic year (tass.ru/obschestvo/9372059).
·         Health officials say 80 percent of Russians put on weight during the pandemic and that they should now exercise more (regnum.ru/news/3053911.html).
·         And Chuvash residents gathered four tons of fodder to save animals in the local zoo from starvation. Because attendance has fallen during the pandemic, zoo operators were not able to make enough money to feed the animals (regnum.ru/news/3053808.html).
·         .

Window on Eurasia — New Series

Saved Stories – None