Moscow, a city with more than 12 million people has been on lockdown for more than three months. The city-wide lockdown was enforced after more than a thousand infections were reported in March. With only four hours of warning, residents of Moscow were forbidden to vacate their homes with the exceptions of essential workers and activities. The pronouncement was as glaring as the Kremlin’s adamant statement of ‘de facto no epidemic’ just three days earlier.
Sergei Sobyanin, Moscow’s mayor, has stated that together with the recent turn of events within Europe and United States and Moscow reaching its one thousand mark of infections has prompted him into setting in motion lockdown measures within the city.
Currently, Russia has the third highest number of cases of Covid-19 infections in the world, with well over 480, 000 cases and as many as 6,142 deaths recorded. Critics have accused Russia of whitewashing Covid-19 case reports with official number of deaths being questioned.
State officials have pointed out that the data was in fact, a result of extensive testing campaign of the nation. In addition to this, Russian officials have indicated Russia’s comparatively low mortality rate to be a driving force in easing of pandemic restrictions previously established. However, the rise of Covid-19 cases continues with as much as 9000 new cases by June. In spite of this, Moscow is officially ended the strict lockdown on Monday, June 08.
In fact, Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin stated a government order has been signed relieving all travel restrictions since the grounding of all international flights in March. He also stated that the decision was justified due to the stabilization of the infection rate especially in its nation’s capital.
Whether or not the effect of this move of state officials is yet to be seen, it will undoubtedly be the 145 million citizens of Russia that will take the brunt of it.