COVID-19: Moscow Mortality Surge Suggests Virus Toll Underreported

The global death toll from the coronavirus is some 283,000 with 4.1 million infections confirmed, causing mass disruptions as governments continue to try to slow the spread of the new respiratory illness.

Here’s a roundup of COVID-19 developments in RFE/RL’s broadcast regions.

Russia

Moscow’s civil registry office says preliminary data shows a 20 percent increase in fatalities in April this year compared with the average over the past 10 years.

According to the registry, 11,846 people died in Moscow in April, compared with the number of deaths on average in the Russian capital registered over the last decade — 9,866.

The report comes at a time when Russia is experiencing the fastest rate of growth in coronavirus infections in Europe, yet a comparatively low mortality rate of 0.9 percent, possibly suggesting the number of deaths in the country is being underreported by officials.

On May 11, health authorities said 11, 656 new coronavirus cases, including 94 deaths, were registered across the country in the previous 24 hours, bringing the total number of cases to 221,344, including 2,009 deaths.

By comparison, Italy has 219,070 confirmed cases and a death toll of 30,560, while France had 177,094 cases and 26,383 deaths, according to a tally by the U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University.

With reporting by The Moscow Times
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