Moscow officials on Thursday ordered to close restaurants, cafes, bars, shopping malls and some parks in the city for nine days starting from Saturday.
The move, aimed at keeping people at home amid the coronavirus outbreak, comes a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin declared next week a holiday, during which only essential businesses — such as pharmacies, grocery stores and banks — will continue to operate.
The number of coronavirus cases in Russia has been growing rapidly this week. Russian authorities reported 840 cases of the new coronavirus on Thursday, with 182 new cases registered since the day before.
On Tuesday, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin told Putin that the situation is “serious.” Russia’s comparatively low caseload could reflect insufficient screening rather than the actual scale of the epidemic, he said, and urged Putin to ramp up testing all across the country.