Moscow authorities announced on Tuesday that residents will soon have to file an anti-COVID pass to enter restaurants as the city fights an increase in infections caused by the Delta variant.
The new restriction is the latest in a series of measures after new daily coronavirus cases tripled in just two weeks, and Mayor Sergei Sobyanin attributed the increase to the highly infectious Delta variant first identified in India.
In a blog post, Sobyanin wrote that as of June 28, restaurant visitors will be required to submit a QR code showing a negative coronavirus test valid for three days, or showing that they have been vaccinated or have been ill. of coronavirus during the previous six months.
“We need to find solutions that allow us to protect people as much as possible and reduce the burden on the healthcare system,” he said.
However, these solutions, he added, could not alter the “normal functioning” of the service industry and “other sectors of the economy.”
“There are similar rules for visiting restaurants and cafes for several months in many European and Asian cities. And the time has come for Moscow to learn from its experience if we want to avoid another highly undesirable closure,” Sobyanin said.
Unlike many European countries, Russia did not re-impose a blockade when it was hit by a second wave of infections last fall as it sought to support a troubled economy.
The country, meanwhile, backed up its hopes of reducing the pandemic in its four self-produced vaccines: Sputnik V, EpiVacCorona, CoviVac and Sputnik Light, one dose.
But authorities have faced a population highly skeptical about inoculation against COVID-19, with a recent independent poll saying about 60 percent of Russians have no plans to fire.
Although there have been free strikes since December, only 15.5 million people out of a population of about 146 million have been completely vaccinated, according to the Gogov website, which estimates COVID figures for the regions and media.
Moscow and a number of regions announced earlier this month mandatory vaccination measures for employees in the service sector.
Russia is among the countries most affected by the pandemic, with the sixth largest number of cases in the world, according to an AFP count based on official figures.
© 2021 AFP
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