Russia’s daily virus cases, deaths hit six-month highs

Russia reports more than 20,000 new coronavirus infections and 568 deaths, a peak not seen since January, as the country battles a surging outbreak of the Delta variant worsened by a sluggish jab drive.

In total, officials reports 20,182 new cases across the country over the past 24 hours, including just over 8,500 infections in Moscow, the epicenter of Russia’s outbreak.

The Russian capital also recorded 92 deaths — the highest in one day since the start of the pandemic, according to the state-run TASS news agency.

The explosion of new cases since mid-June has been spurred by the highly infectious Delta variant first identified in India. It represents 90 percent of new infections in Moscow, the city’s mayor Sergei Sobyanin has said.

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