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While all eyes were on Oxford, England to present the world with the first approved COVID-19 vaccine, Russia surprised everyone and announced on Tuesday that it has approved its own vaccine.

While many are doubtful because of the short trial period, Russian President Vladimir Putin insisted that Russia’s vaccine has received regulatory approval after being tested for less than two months.

eNCA reports that Putin said the vaccine was safe and that it had even been administered to one of his daughters. He didn’t say which one of his daughters or whether she had the COVID-19 virus which has caused a worldwide pandemic.

“I know that it works quite effectively, forms strong immunity, and I repeat, it has passed all the needed checks,” said Putin.

Mass production of the vaccine is currently in the pipeline, even though it has not been put through the paces of what’s commonly referred to as a Phase 3 trial.

Experts regard the third phase of a trial as the most important one as thousands of people are put through the trial.

The vaccine has been named Sputnik-V, in honour of the world’s first satellite. Sputnik is the Russian word for satellite, the BBC reports.

While Russia might be optimistic about its COVID-19 vaccine, New Zealand has confirmed that after 102 days of being virus free, four cases of COVID-19 have been identified in Auckland.

Moneyweb reports that from 12:00 on Wednesday, Auckland will move to level 3, signalling people should stay at home if possible and avoid contact with others. Schools will close for most pupils while bars and restaurants will also shut. This will remain in place for three days, and the rest of the country will go to level 2.

Watch the CBS video below for more on Russia’s vaccine.

Image credits: Bangor Daily News and FOX Carolina

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