Russia's coronavirus cases hit new high, Moscow warns of crackdown

MOSCOW: Russia reported 9,623 new cases on Saturday, its largest daily increase since the start of the pandemic, with a total of 124,054, mainly in the capital Moscow , where the mayor threatened to cut the number of travel permits.

The death toll nationwide rose to 1,222 after 57 people died in the last 24 hours, Russia 's coronavirus crisis response centre said, after revising the previous day's tally.

Russia has been in partial lockdown, aimed at curbing the spread of the novel coronavirus, since the end of March. In Moscow , people who have not obtained a special permit for free movement, are only able to leave their homes to shop, walk their dogs and dispose of garbage.

President Vladimir Putin it has ordered the restrictive measures, called non-working days, to continue until May 11 inclusive, when the country finishes celebrating the Labor Day and Victory Day holidays.

Despite a relatively low number of cases and deaths compared to the United States, Italy and Spain, which have been hit hardest by the disease, Russia 's infection curve has not reached a plateau.

Moscow mayor Sergei Sobyanin issued an appeal on Saturday to Muscovites to continue to self-isolate. He said the number of critically ill patients is rising, but not as steeply worst-case scenario projections.

However, it is obvious that the threat is on the rise, he said on his blog.

Sobyanin told Rossiya-1 TV station that the Moscow authorities may cut the number of digital permits issued for travel across the city if the situation worsens.

El primer ministro, el segundo funcionario de mayor rango en el país después de Putin, le dijo al President el jueves que había dado positivo por coronavirus y que estaba renunciando temporalmente para recuperarse.

First Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Belousov now serves as acting Prime Minister in his absence.

On Friday, another member of the Russia n cabinet, Construction Minister Vladimir Yakushev, announced he had been diagnosed with the virus and that he would be treated in hospital. Dmitry Volkov, one of his deputies, also tested positive, the ministry said.