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10 Russian Lawmakers Hospitalized With Coronavirus

The State Duma's speaker admonished elderly deputies for attending in-person sessions. State Duma Press Service

At least 10 members of Russia’s lower house of parliament are currently hospitalized with coronavirus and more than 50 have developed antibodies, its speaker said Tuesday.

State Duma speaker Vyacheslav Volodin admonished elderly deputies for attending in-person sessions after the legislative body came back from summer recess last week. 

“To date the number of those with antibodies has exceeded 50 people and 10 deputies are in hospitals,” Volodin was quoted by Interfax as saying.

“The course of the disease is different with everyone. We’ve proposed measures that allow the maximum number of people to gather in this chamber,” he added. 

The 450-member State Duma needs 226 lawmakers to be present in order to vote on legislative initiatives.

Interfax reported that 55 State Duma deputies had a valid excuse to miss Tuesday’s plenary session.

A database of Duma votes showed that at least 400 deputies were in attendance last week.

Russia saw an uptick in its daily coronavirus caseload this month, with more than 5,000 confirmed infections since the start of September and more than 6,000 in each of the past four days.

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Russia has registered more than 1.1 million cases and more than 19,500 deaths.

Several government officials, including President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman and the prime minister, have contracted and since recovered from Covid-19.

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