Kremlin: at the moment Putin will not vaccinate against COVID-19

Russian President Vladimir Putin will decide whether to vaccinate against coronavirus if he sees fit, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said at a briefing on Wednesday.

According to RIA Novosti, Peskov was asked whether Putin would be vaccinated in order to attend international events.

"As for the president's vaccination, when and if he deems it necessary, he will report it himself," Peskov replied.

The day before it became known that Putin refused to go to the UN General Assembly in New York and instead of a live speech will record a video message. According to Peskov, this is due to fears of the epidemiological situation in the United States.

In addition, Putin canceled the annual TV show "Direct Line" during which he answered questions and complaints of citizens, coming by phone and video link.

The president's "big press conference" will be held with elements of the "direct line" which is planned in a "face-to-face format" in December, Peskov said.

"You can see how often the president communicates with regional leaders, with different teams. All of this is actually done in the same format as the direct line. Therefore, we can say figuratively that the president has been maintaining a "direct line" for the last few months," he explained.

In early August, Putin announced the registration of the world's first COVID-19 vaccine in Russia. On September 9, the Russian Ministry of Health announced that it will begin vaccination of citizens from high-risk groups.

At the same time, the third phase of clinical trials has started in Russia, in which 40,000 volunteers will take part. The drug, called Sputnik V, has been approved by Roszdravnadzor, the Russian Federal Service for Surveillance in Healthcare.

  Putin, Russia