(WFMJ) WASHINGTON (AP) — No, Russia isn’t having a Sputnik moment. The announcement Tuesday by Russian President Vladimir Putin that his country was the first to approve a coronavirus vaccine did not provoke the awe and wonder of the Soviet Union’s launch of the first satellite into orbit in 1957. Instead, it was met by doubts about the science and safety. […]
“To be the first one out of the block with a coronavirus vaccine would be a real — pardon the pun — shot in the arm for the Kremlin,” said Timothy Frye, a political science professor at Columbia University who specializes in post-Soviet politics. […]
The Russian president may face similar doubts at home. Frye noted a 2018 Gallup Poll that showed the former Soviet countries have some of the highest rates of anti-vaccination sentiment in the world. If it turns out not to work, it would be a real black eye,” he said.
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