Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin says that they recorded an unprecedented surge of Covid-19 cases in the capital, with an increase of 80% in recent days.
The number of patients taken to hospital in a serious condition has meanwhile grown by 70% “over the past few days”, Sobyanin said.
Moscow citizens “are getting too relaxed, they think it’s over”, he says, adding: “Covid has a treacherous history behind it.”
Due to the worsening coronavirus situation, all public events are being cancelled in areas surrounding Moscow, the local authorities say.
The ban will stay in place until 15 July, Moscow Region governor Andrei Vorobyov says.
He told a meeting of local officials that the number of new Covid-19 hospitalisations had nearly doubled from 500 to 950 patients a day.
“If we said earlier that older people were in the risk zone, now young people are falling ill increasingly more often, and they have it bad: 60% of new cases and 33% of hospital admissions are under 50,” he said.
The developments come as Russia’s second-largest city St Petersburg is hosting Euro 2020 football championships.
On 15 June, the highest number of cases reported by Russia were in Moscow (6,805), Moscow Region (1,135), and St Petersburg (902).
There are fears that the actual number of new cases and deaths may be higher, as the Russian authorities have been accused of under-reporting Covid-19 statistics.