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Russia confirms 440 new coronavirus cases

Russia confirmed on Wednesday 440 new cases of the novel coronavirus in 24 hours, bringing the total to 2,777. The country has reported a total of 24 COVID-19-related deaths so far, with seven additional fatalities since yesterday, emergency officials said in a statement. "To date, 2,777 cases of coronavirus infection have been registered in 75 regions of the Russian Federation. During the day, 69 people were discharged, and 190 people recovered during the entire period. Seven fatal cases were registered during the day," it said.

The coronavirus is spreading particularly quickly in the capital Moscow, accounting for two-thirds of cases -- 1,880.

Local authorities are testing a special application designed to monitor the movements of positive cases who voluntarily choose home treatment.

"The Social Monitoring mobile app is being developed and internally tested," Moscow administration representative Denis Lysenko told reporters, adding that the program would be necessary to monitor if patients under home treatment were complying with the quarantine regime.

"This will ensure the safety of others and prevent further spread of the coronavirus," Lysenko said.

To stem the spread of the infection, Russia imposed lockdowns on several regions, including the capital Moscow and the second-largest city St. Petersburg, with more regions being added every day. Residents in locked-down areas are allowed to leave homes only for buying groceries, walking pets and disposing of home waste.

Also, Russia has banned the entry of foreign nationals and suspended international air traffic.

After first appearing in Wuhan, China, in December, the virus, officially known as COVID-19, has spread to at least 180 countries and regions, indicates the Johns Hopkins University database.

The data shows the confirmed number of cases worldwide has surpassed 862,000, with the death toll over 42,300, and more than 178,700 recoveries.

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