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21 April 202014:27

Extract from the briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova, April 17, 2020

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CSTO member states' cooperation in preventing and battling COVID-19


As part of the activities of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, its member states are seeking efficient mechanisms to overcome the emerging challenges amidst the current spread of the novel coronavirus infection.

At Russia's initiative, the heads of military medical services held extra consultations on preventing and tackling the coronavirus infection via video conference at the CSTO's Emergency Response Centre on April 16.  

Military specialists in epidemiology, infectious diseases, anesthesiology and intensive care medicine took part in a substantial dialogue, with a presentation on existing developments by Russia's leading military medical institutions - the Kirov Military Medical Academy and the Burdenko Main Military Clinic Hospital, including the methods being used to treat patients in a critical condition.

During the consultations, the Russian specialists shared with their partners their experience when it comes to organising preventative measures in the armed forces, cooperation with civil healthcare institutions, and the concepts elaborated while providing assistance by Russian servicemen to Italy and Serbia.

Agreements were reached on further contacts in this format to analyse and to exchange information on the current situation as regards the spread of COVID-19 in CSTO countries.

CSTO member states confirmed their commitment to close cooperation and rendering mutual assistance to provide general security and support combat effectiveness of the CSTO collective forces.


Russia's assistance to Uzbekistan in combating COVID-19


Amidst the unfolding situation, Russia has sent free COVID-19 test kits, produced by the State Research Centre of Virology and Biotechnology VECTOR of the Federal Service for the Oversight of Consumer Protection and Welfare (Rospotrebnadzor), to its Uzbek partners in order to provide assistance to Uzbekistan.

Representatives of the Agency for Sanitary-Epidemiological Welfare at the Uzbek Ministry of Health were invited to attend the meetings, held by the Council of Heads of Authorised Bodies in the Field of Sanitary and Epidemiological Welfare of the EAEU States’ Population, on the developments around the spread of COVID-19 via video conferences held on January 27, February 10, and March 2, 16 and 30.

We are cooperating not only with Belarus and Uzbekistan but with a number of other neighbouring states too. I will speak on this later today when I will be answering questions. We are providing assistance to Russian nationals abroad who need assistance with getting back home or locally where they are at the moment. In this regard, we are closely cooperating with embassies, foreign ministries, and public organisations. This job is being carried out very actively. 

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