Sunday. 19.05.2024

Russia's second-largest city will introduce new restrictions on public life starting November 1 as Saint Petersburg tries to combat a surge in coronavirus infections.

From the start of next month adults must be able to prove that they have been vaccinated or have recovered from the virus at some venues, including major sporting events.

From mid-November, proof via QR code will also be required when visiting gyms, theatres, cinemas and museums.

From December, the regulation is also to be extended to gastronomy and retail.

Those who can prove that they cannot be vaccinated for health reasons will be exempt.

Employers have been instructed to move unvaccinated over-60s to home office.

As in many other regions, the infection situation in Saint Petersburg has been tense for weeks. On Monday, authorities there registered 3,097 new cases within 24 hours.

Vaccine scepticism

Russia-wide, a new high since the beginning of the pandemic was reached with more than 34,300 infections within one day. In the same period, 998 people died with Covid-19, but experts believe the actual numbers are much higher.

Vaccine scepticism remains high in Russia. According to the latest figures, just under a third of the 146 million Russians have been fully vaccinated.

The Kremlin has emphasized that the decision to tighten coronavirus rules is up to individual regions and that a nationwide lockdown is not planned.

Saint Petersburg to tighten Covid-19 rules as cases in Russia surge