FAST FIVE: Putin Orders All Workers Home For One Week Amid Record COVID Surge

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President Vladimir Putin announced on Wednesday an almost unprecedented order for all workers across the nation to stay home for one week.

Putin further expressed frustrations with the course the pandemic is taking, after the vaccine has long been available to all seeking it: “I can't understand what's going on,” he said.

“It's better to get the vaccine, why wait for the illness and its grave consequences.

According to France24, there continues to be widespread hesitancy based on “mixed signals” from government authorities, akin to the kind of confusion and contradictory messaging seen in the United States and other parts of the globe: Even though Russia in August 2020 became the first country of the world to authorize a coronavirus vaccine and vaccines are plentiful, Russians have shown hesitancy about getting the shots, a skepticism blamed on conflicting signals sent by authorities.

While extolling Sputnik V and three other domestic vaccines, state-controlled media were often critical of Western-made shots, a controversial message that many saw as feeding public doubts about vaccines in general.

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