MOSCOW 

Russia saw a new spike in the spread of the novel coronavirus infections on Sunday, while the number of cases crossed 400,000 by the end of the week.

For the first time since May 23 the incidence rate exceeded 9,000 — 9,268 people were tested positive for COVID-19 over the last 24 hours, taking the country’s tally to 405,843, the emergency task force said in a statement.

The fatalities are slightly lower than an average this week but still keep up 100+ daily. Since yesterday the infection claimed 138 lives, bringing the death toll to 4,693.

Recoveries were also at the week’s lowest, with only 4,414 were discharged from hospital over the last 24 hours compared to 8,000, reported every day since Monday.

On Saturday, the Russian Health Ministry officially approved Avifavir medication for the treatment of the coronavirus patients, although the final stage of trials has not been completed yet.

According to the results of the first stage of clinical trials, Avifavir showed no new or previously unrecorded side effects and its effectiveness against COVID-19 was higher than 80%.

The final stage started on May 21, and 330 coronavirus-infected patients volunteered to take part in it.

On Tuesday, the government said the spread of the virus had reached a “stable” and controlled level and began to lift pandemic restrictions inside the country, while keeping in force a ban on foreign entry into the country, with international air and railway travel still suspended.

Two top Russian officials are being treated for the coronavirus, while four others have recovered.

The pandemic has claimed more than 369,500 lives in 188 countries and regions since originating in China last December. The US, Brazil and Russia are currently the world’s worst-hit countries.

Some 6.07 million cases have been reported worldwide. As many as 2.57 million people have recovered so far, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.

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