COVID-19: Moscow Ends Mask Requirement, Citing Improvement

Moscow ends Mask mandate

On Monday, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin lifted a long-standing requirement that people wear protective medical masks in public, citing the improving situation with Covid-19 and the need to assist enterprises facing sanctions burden.

The number of daily coronavirus cases peaked at 203,949 on February 11 when the highly contagious Omicron variety spread swiftly across the country, but has slowly declined since then.

New infections totaled 41,055 on Monday.

The decline in mortality caused by the coronavirus has been less dramatic.

On Monday, the government’s coronavirus task force reported 533 deaths across the country in the previous 24 hours, down from 1,254 on November 20, 2021.

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957 new illnesses and 44 deaths were reported on Monday, in Moscow, a city of about 13 million people.

“Steady improvement in the epidemiological situation allows us to take a long-awaited decision,” Sobyanin wrote on his personal website.

“From Tuesday, March 15, we are cancelling the requirement to use protective masks.”

He said companies would no longer have to take anti-Covid measures such as carrying out temperature checks of employees and seeking to ensure social distancing.

“In the current circumstances, this decision will also support businesses that are already experiencing serious sanctions pressure.”

When the extremely contagious Omicron variant spread quickly across the country on February 11, the number of daily coronavirus cases peaked at 203,949, but it has gradually declined since then.