By Jonny Tickle
The Russian region of Khanty-Mansi has become the country’s first to introduce self-isolation for those unvaccinated against Covid-19, with local authorities requiring that residents of four districts get jabbed or stay home.
The order comes as immunity levels in the area, which is roughly the size of France, remain below 50%, still far below the national target of 80%.
In a decree published on Monday, Governor Natalya Komarova revealed that those who have recovered from the virus would also be exempt from the measures. Khanty-Mansi, in western Siberia, is known for producing much of the country’s oil.
According to the new rules, those living in the districts of Nefteyugansk, Nyagan, Uray, and Kondinsky will have to be vaccinated or stay at home until December 5. Any trips outside the home, such as going grocery shopping or walking a pet, must be noted on the region’s digital portal.
Khanty-Mansi’s new restrictions follow increasingly strict measures imposed by certain other regions throughout the country. Earlier this month, Russia’s second city, St. Petersburg, introduced compulsory Covid-19 vaccination for over-60s, with health officials also requiring those with chronic diseases to be inoculated by December 15. This has since been copied by other parts of the country, most recently on Monday by Rostov Region.
Many other parts of Russia have introduced their own region-wide restrictions, such as mandatory vaccination to enter cafes, restaurants, and theaters. The popular tourist city of Sochi has extended it to shopping centers and hotels. Over the weekend, some cities saw protests against the rules, though there were no large turnouts. In Kostroma, around 300km northeast of Moscow, several demonstrators were arrested by police, including a member of the Communist Party.
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