Putin in self-isolation due to Covid cases in inner circle

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Russian President Vladimir Putin entered self-isolation after people in his inner circle became infected with the coronavirus, the Kremlin said Tuesday, adding that the leader himself tested negative for COVID-19.

Putin, who is fully vaccinated with Russia’s Sputnik V, held several public engagements indoors Monday and even said that he may have to quarantine soon.

An aide at the time sought to suggest he was speaking generally and insisted Tuesday that no one’s heath was endangered.

During a daily conference call with reporters, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that Putin, 68, is “absolutely healthy” but had come in contact with someone who contracted the virus. Asked if Putin tested negative for the virus, Peskov said “definitely, yes.”

Peskov didn’t say when Putin began self-isolating, when he tested negative, how long he would remain in self-isolation or who among the president’s contacts was infected.

During a videoconference with government officials and members of the ruling United Russia party, Putin said that several people in his “immediate circle” were infected with the virus, including a staff member who he was in close contact with throughout Monday.

That staffer was vaccinated and recently got “revaccinated,” Putin said, apparently referring to a third shot that Russia is offering people who were immunized more than six months ago.

“Three days after revaccination he fell ill,” Putin said. “We will see how Sputnik V really works.—Agencies

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