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Russia Reports Record Daily Number Of COVID Deaths

A Russian health worker escorts a COVID-19 patient to a hospital complex in Moscow, which has experienced a spike in coronavirus cases in the past week.

Russia has recorded 852 fatalities over the past 24 hours -- its highest daily coronavirus death toll since the start of the pandemic -- following a surge in infections linked to the Delta variant and a lackluster vaccination campaign.

The previous record high of 828 fatalities was recorded on September 24.

The new figure published on September 28 brings Russia's total deaths from COVID-19 to 205,531 -- the highest toll in Europe.

Russia, the world's fifth worst-hit country with more than 7 million people infected, has seen cases spike since last month as vaccinations stall.

Moscow has experienced an infections surge over the past week, with Deputy Mayor Anastasia Rakova saying the highly contagious Delta variant now accounts for all of the cases in the Russian capital.

Polls show Russians are vaccine-skeptic, with a majority not planning to get inoculated.

Only 28 percent of the population has been fully vaccinated as of September 28, according to the Gogov website, which tallies COVID data from the regions.

The government initially announced a goal of fully vaccinating 60 percent of Russia's population by this month, but later dropped that target even though free jabs have been available since early December.

Based on reporting by AFP and TASS