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Putin Says Dozens In His Entourage Have Contracted COVID-19

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Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that dozens of his top aides have tested positive for COVID-19 and that he will continue to self-isolate as a result, the Associated Press reported Thursday.

Putin began to quarantine Tuesday after an undisclosed number of members of his inner circle contracted the virus, according to the AP. He is fully vaccinated with Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine.

“Cases of coronavirus have been identified in my immediate environment, and this is not one, not two, but several tens of people,” Putin said, according to the AP. “Now we have to observe the self-isolation regime for several days.”

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that those infected had only mild cases, and that they were mostly “those who take part in ensuring the work and activities of the head of state, his security.”

Despite being the first country in the world to approve a coronavirus vaccine, just 28% of the Russian population has been fully vaccinated, according to a database from The New York Times. The country has recorded approximately 192,000 deaths from the virus, about 1 in every 750 people.

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