Russia's reports record-high daily COVID-19 infections

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A medical specialist walks by an ambulance outside a hospital for patients infected with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Moscow, Russia October 6, 2021. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

MOSCOW, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Russia reported 34,303 cases of new coronavirus infections in the past 24 hours, a record-high number since the start of the pandemic, data from the state coronavirus task force showed on Sunday.

It also reported 997 deaths from the disease, five fewer than the daily record-high of 1,002 reported the previous day. read more

The latest coronavirus deaths brought the official national death toll to 223,312, with a total of almost 8 million cases.

Russian authorities blame a slow vaccination campaign for the sharp rise of infections and deaths, which forced the health ministry to ask retired, vaccinated medics to return to hospitals.

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Reporting by Gleb Stolyarov; Writing by Vladimir Soldatkin; Editing by Alex Richardson

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