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Kremlin spokesman refutes allegations of COVID-19 mortality figures manipulation in Russia

"Have you ever thought about the possibility of Russia's health care system being more effective?" he said
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov Mikhail Metzel/TASS
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov
© Mikhail Metzel/TASS

NEW YORK, June 10. /TASS/. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Tuesday denied US journalists’ allegations that the Russian authorities were somehow manipulating the figures of COVID-19 mortality in Russia.

"No, I don’t agree with this assessment. Have you ever thought about the possibility of Russia's health care system being more effective?" he said, adding that the Russian public health system had been "giving an opportunity for more people to stay alive."

Speaking about the overall number of coronavirus cases recorded in Russia, Peskov said: "Our country uses the maximum possible amount of tests for coronavirus. And the more you test, the more you detect."

When asked how the pandemic impacted Russian President Vladimir Putin’s popularity ratings, Peskov replied that "President Putin has stated numerous times that he doesn't care about his personal ratings, that in politics if you are real statesman, you should not think about your ratings - because if you think about your ratings, you won't be able to take responsible decisions."

"We are concerned about this pandemic, and we are concerned about the impact of this pandemic on the country's economy," Peskov added.

According to a CNN article, Peskov "expressed hope that the 2020 US presidential election could present an opening for improved US-Russia relations, and that coronavirus would prompt global discussion about handling future health crises."

"We all will have to sit down and to think about lessons of this pandemic for every single country ... [and] for the whole world," he was quoted as saying.

On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, over 7,210,900 people have been infected worldwide and more than 408,900 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 3,550,900 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.

To date, 485,253 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 242,397 patients having recovered from the disease. Russia’s latest data indicates 6,142 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.