US, WASHINGTON (ORDO NEWS) — For the second time, Bloomberg changed the title of the text on mortality from coronavirus in Russia, which attracted the attention of the Foreign Ministry. If in the first version the publication was entitled “Experts want to know why the coronavirus did not kill more Russians”, now – “Experts are wondering about Russia’s data on mortality from COVID-19”
For the second time, Bloomberg has changed the title of a publication on Russian statistics on coronavirus mortality. Initially, the text was entitled “Experts want to know why the coronavirus did not kill more Russians.” The representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Maria Zakharova, drew attention to this wording. She wrote on Facebook that she was not sure that with the world order in which Bloomberg publishes an article with that headline, “everything is in order.” “The fact that the start of the disinformation campaign against Russia in the context of the pandemic was given, everyone already understood,” Zakharova said.
Then Zakharova updated the post and indicated that Bloomberg changed the title to “Experts want to know why the coronavirus did not kill more Russians.” Bloomberg realized that the headline was creepy <…> Another thing. And then the experts were offended, apparently, ”the representative of the Foreign Ministry added.
On Saturday, May 16, the title of the article was again changed. Now the material is called “Experts Ask About Russian Data on Mortality from COVID-19.” In the text, the authors argue that the number of deaths with confirmed coronavirus in Russia is several times less than other countries affected by the pandemic. Bloomberg editors pointed out that Russia is the only one of the 10 most affected countries where the death toll is less than 1%, while in Spain, France and the UK this figure is 12-14%, in the USA it reaches 6%, and in Germany – up to 4.5%. The world average mortality rate is 6.8%, Bloomberg added.
Earlier this week, the Financial Times wrote that there could be 70% more deaths from coronavirus in Russia than official statistics say. The New York Times also announced a possible understatement of mortality statistics in Russia on the same day . On May 12, Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova responded to FT’s publication : according to her, the Russian authorities did not underestimate the data. “The mortality rate in the Russian Federation is 7.6 times lower than in the world as a whole, it is like that. And we never manipulated official statistics,” said Golikova.
On May 13, Zakharova said that the Foreign Ministry had prepared letters to the editors of the Financial Times and The New York Times demanding to refute information about the underestimation by the Russian authorities of data on mortality from coronavirus. The State Duma’s Commission of Inquiry into the interference in Russian affairs also considered newspaper publications unacceptable. Roskomnadzor began checking publications for violations of the law on countering the dissemination of false information.
As of May 17, 281,752 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia. 2631 people died, including 1503 in Moscow. The total number of deaths in the capital in April was the highest since 2010 (there are no earlier data on the open government data portal of the Moscow government).
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