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Putin Urges Russians To Get Vaccinated As COVID Situation Stabilizes

A man receives a dose of the Sputnik V vaccine against COVID-19 on a medical train at a railway station in the town of Tulun in Russia's Irkutsk Region.

President Vladimir Putin says that almost 21.5 million people in Russia have been vaccinated against COVID-19 and encouraged Russians push the number higher in a country of 146 million people.

"The situation over the virus in the country, according to specialists, is stable, " Putin told reporters in Sochi on May 10, adding that the spread of the coronavirus across the nation had held steady for several days.

"That is why it is necessary to actively get tested and vaccinated. These are the most important ways to overcome the pandemic and its consequences," Putin said.

The Kremlin said last month that Russia's relatively low rate of vaccination so far is linked to demand and it expects this to accelerate "over time."

As of May 10, the number of officially registered coronavirus vases in Russia was 4,888,727, including 113,647 deaths.

Based on reporting by RIA Novosti, Interfax, and TASS