Putin says dozens of staffers infected with COVID-19

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Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that dozens of staffers who work with him are infected with the coronavirus. 

“Cases of coronavirus have been identified in my immediate environment, and this is not one, not two, but several tens of people. Now we have to observe the self-isolation regime for several days,” Putin said at the Collective Treaty Security Organization summit, which he attended remotely, The Associated Press reported

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Tuesday the Russian president would be self-isolating due to the outbreak of cases among his inner circle, but is still tending to his duties by video. 

“Of course we know who fell ill in the president’s entourage and the self-isolation [regime] does not directly affect the president’s work,” Peskov said.

“But it’s just that in-person meetings will not take place for a while,” he added. “But that does not affect their frequency and the president will continue his activity via video conferences.”

On Thursday, Peskov said none of the cases are severe and are from “mainly those who take part in ensuring the work and activities of the head of state, his security,” according to the AP.

Putin, who is fully vaccinated with the Sputnik COVID-19 vaccine and has tested negative for the virus, is reportedly quarantining as a precautionary measure.

Russia has had more than 7 million reported COVID-19 cases throughout the pandemic and more than 191,000 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins. Only 27 percent of its population is fully vaccinated.

Tags COVID-19 vaccine Kremlin Vladimir Putin

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