COVID-19: Russia reports highest death toll in 24 hours as infections dip

WION Web Team Moscow May 22, 2020, 03.21 PM(IST)

Coronavirus in Russia Photograph:( Reuters )

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Amid the crisis, Russia's minister Maksim Reshetnikov said that the economy is forecast to shrink by 9.5 per cent in the second quarter of 2020

Russia on Friday reported 150 deaths in the past 24 hours due to coronavirus even as the number of infections fell below 9,000.

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Russian authorities reported 8,894 new coronavirus cases in a single day with the death toll climbing to 3,249. The total number of COVID-19 cases has now reached 326,448 which is the second highest after the United States which has over 1.5 million cases.

Amid the crisis, Russia's minister Maksim Reshetnikov said that the economy is forecast to shrink by 9.5 per cent in the second quarter of 2020 compared to the same period last year.

"The main factor of the GDP decrease this year is the internal restrictions" the minister said, adding, "we have factored in August-September as the final lifting of the restrictions."

Dagestan has overtaken the nation's capital Moscow as the new epicenter of the virus with over 3,600 cases. As the number of cases suddenly increased President Putin in a video link to the residents said: "The scope of the catastrophe is forcing us to appeal to you,", adding, "Please, bring your attention to Dagestan," even as the local media called the situation a  "catastrophe."

"The situation in the Republic of Dagestan is complicated and of course calls for additional -- and urgent -- measures," Putin said in the video call.