The latest: Another record in Russia’s daily virus numbers

Russia reports its largest daily number of new coronavirus infections, more than 70% more than the number per month …

Russia reports its largest daily number of new coronavirus infections, more than 70% higher than the number a month ago, as the country is facing a sustained increase in the number of cases.

The National Coronavirus Task Force said Sunday that 34,303 new infections were detected the previous day, compared to the 20,174 reported on September 19th.

The death toll of 999 was barely lower than the record-breaking 1,002 deaths reported on Saturday.

Russian authorities have tried to speed up the pace of vaccination with lotteries, bonuses and other incentives, but widespread vaccine skepticism and conflicting signals from officials dampened efforts. The government said this week that about 43 million Russians, or about 29% of the country’s nearly 146 million people, are fully vaccinated.

Despite rising tolls, the Kremlin has ruled out a new nationwide lockdown like the one early in the pandemic that hurt the economy hard and eroded President Vladimir Putin’s popularity. Instead, it has delegated the power to enforce coronavirus restrictions to regional authorities.



-Robert Durst was hospitalized with COVID-19 after murder

– American cities, police unions clash as vaccination mandates take effect

– Protests welcome the start of Italy demanding COVID passports in workplaces

– Officials set the stage for a national campaign to vaccinate younger American children

– FDA panel approves booster shots for Johnson & Johnson vaccine


See full AP pandemic coverage at


Here is what else happens:

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka-Sri Lankan authorities allow the reopening of cinemas and restaurants and also allow wedding receptions as part of the relaxation of COVID-19 related restrictions.

Cinemas will be open from next week, but with only 25% occupancy. Restaurants are allowed to cater for a maximum of 50 customers at a time. Wedding receptions are also allowed, but with a maximum of 50 guests.

Banks can only accommodate five clients at a time, while the gyms can have a maximum of 10.

The government’s move to ease restrictions comes amid a sharp drop in COVID-19 cases and deaths over the past few weeks.

However, the government still continues with the ban on public gatherings, while restrictions are imposed on public transport and trains are still stopped.


WELLINGTON, New Zealand – New Zealand health workers administered a record number of vaccine stings on Saturday as the nation held a festival aimed at getting more people vaccinated against coronavirus.

Musicians, sports stars and celebrities attended the “Vaxathon” event, which was broadcast on television and online for eight hours in a row. By late afternoon, more than 120,000 people had been shot, surpassing the daily record of 93,000 set in August.

A flashback to television fundraising “telethon” events that were popular from the 1970s to the 1990s comes as New Zealand faces its biggest threat since the pandemic began, with an outbreak of the Delta variant spreading through the largest city in Auckland and beyond.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, who chatted with motorists at a vaccination center in Wellington, initially set a target of 100,000 plugs for the day, but raised it to 150,000 after the first target was reached.

She also set a target of 25,000 shots for native Maori, whose vaccination numbers have faltered and who have been hit hard by the recent outbreak.


MAINE Opponents of a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for Maine health professionals filed an emergency complaint with the U.S. Supreme Court after suffering another legal defeat on Friday.

The appeal was filed hours after the U.S. 1st Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston denied a request to stop the mandate from taking effect. The Supreme Court previously dismissed complaints about vaccine claims to teachers in New York City and staff and students at Indiana University.

The Maine vaccine mandate, announced by Democratic Gov. Janet Mills, requires health care workers to be vaccinated against coronavirus or risk losing their jobs. The state will begin enforcing the mandate on October 29th.


SACRAMENTO, California – A Northern California judge has tentatively ruled that prison officials acted with deliberate indifference when they caused a deadly coronavirus outbreak in one of the world’s most famous prisons last year.

But Marin County Superior Court Judge Geoffrey Howard said vaccines have changed the landscape so much since then that officials no longer violate inmates’ constitutional rights.

The lawsuit stemmed from the failed transfer of infected inmates in May 2020 from a prison in Southern California to San Quentin. The coronavirus then quickly infected 75% of inmates in the prison north of San Francisco, leading to the deaths of 28 inmates and a detective.


PHOENIX-Arizona’s three state universities will comply with federal mandates for public contractors and require their employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Dec. 8, unless exemptions are granted, officials said Friday.

The requirement from the University of Arizona, Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University includes undergraduate and graduate students who are also university employees, the state government said in a statement.

The statement quoted President Joe Biden’s executive order on compliance with federal COVID-19 guidelines in the workplace, saying that universities have “hundreds of millions of dollars in federal contracts that fund critical research, employment, and education efforts.”

“We respect individual opinions about the vaccine and will include disability (including medical) and religious accommodation in accordance with federal regulations,” the statement said.

A spokeswoman for regents did not immediately respond when asked what would happen to an employee who did not comply with the mandate.


ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The governing body of Alaska’s largest city has overruled the mayor’s veto against an emergency order imposing a 60-day mask mandate.

Alaska Public Media reports that the Anchorage Assembly on Thursday overturned Mayor Dave Bronson’s veto against the measure, which requires masks by most in indoor public spaces.

The regulation requires people to wear masks in public places indoors and in common areas. It provides some exceptions. Companies must deny access to people who are not wearing masks.

The order can be canceled earlier than 60 days if two of Anchorage’s three hospitals do not operate crisis care protocols, or if the city does not have a high COVID-19 transfer rate.


PORTLAND, Maine-A federal appeals court has rejected an urgent request to stop a COVID-19 vaccination mandate from taking effect in Maine.

The rule, announced by Democratic Gov. Janet Mills, requires health care workers to be vaccinated against the disease by October 29 or risk losing their jobs. Opponents of the mandate challenged it in federal court, and a judge refused to block it earlier in the week.

A panel of three judges at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the first circuit in Boston on Friday issued a one-sentence statement saying the request for emergency of the mandate was denied, the Bangor Daily News reported.

Health workers in the state needed to get their last shot before Friday to meet the mandate in time.

Most have already. State officials said earlier this week that the compliance rate at state hospitals was more than 90%, and it was more than 80% in some other types of health facilities such as intermediate care facilities.


OMAHA, the Neb.-Nebraska state’s attorney general, said Friday that he will not seek disciplinary action against physicians prescribing controversial, off-label drugs for the treatment and prevention of coronavirus infections as long as they obtain informed consent from patients and do not make mistakes.

Attorney General Doug Peterson issued a legal statement saying it could not see data to justify lawsuits against health professionals prescribing ivermectin, a decades-old parasite treatment or hydroxychloroquine, a malaria drug that former President Donald Trump tried to prevent a COVID -19 infection.

“Based on the evidence currently available, the mere fact of prescribing ivermectin or hydroxychloroquine to COVID-19 will not result in our office taking disciplinary action,” the Republican Attorney General said in the statement.

Many health experts and leading medical groups have tried to stop the use of both drugs and argued that they can cause harmful side effects and there is little evidence that they help.


BERLIN – Pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and BioNTech say they have requested that their coronavirus vaccine be licensed for children aged 5 to 11 across the EU. If approved, it would be the first opportunity for younger children in Europe to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

In a statement on Friday, Pfizer and BioNTech said they had submitted data to the European Medicines Agency, including results from late stages of a study testing their COVID-19 vaccine in more than 2,200 children aged six months to 11 years using a lower dose than what is usually given to adults.

The companies said that these results showed a “strong immune response” in the children and that the vaccine also proved to be safe. There are currently no COVID-19 vaccines licensed for use in children under 12 in Europe or North America; the shots from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are approved for children aged 12 and older in the EU.

Earlier this month, Pfizer and BioNTech asked the US Food and Drug Administration to administer their vaccine to children aged 5 to 11 years.

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