Russia mandates vaccinations for some as virus cases surge

MOSCOW (AP) — An ambitious plan of vaccinating 30 million Russians by mid-June against the coronavirus has fallen short by a third, and the country has started to see a surge in daily new infections, with over 20,000 reported on Thursday. Even though Russia was the first country to deploy a vaccine last year, just 14% of the population has received at least one shot. Authorities are now mandating vaccinations for certain workers and requiring shots to enter businesses like restaurants. Experts blame the low numbers on several factors, including the public’s wariness of the rushed approval and rollout of the Sputnik V vaccine last year.