COVID-19: Armenia, Russia to impose 14-day ban on passenger air service over coronavirus

Belarus registers 36 coronavirus cases, health ministry says

Russia and Armenia have agreed to ban passenger air service for two weeks in a bid to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, the press service of the Armenian government said on Monday after a telephone conversation between the two countries’ prime ministers, Nikol Pashinyan of Armenia and Mikhail Mishustin of Russia.

"The sides discussed steps aimed at preventing the spread of the novel coronavirus. Pashinyan and Mishustin agreed to restrict passenger air service between the two countries for a period of two weeks. At the same time, the sides agreed to ensure the return of the countries’ nationals. Cargo traffic will not be restricted," the press service said.

By today, Armenia has 30 confirmed coronavirus cases. More than 300 people are under quarantine.

Meanwhile, the number of patients in Belarus, who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, has risen to 36, the country’s health ministry said on Monday. Earlier reports said 27 coronavirus cases had been confirmed.

"Thirty-six patients have been registered in Belarus who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2," the ministry informed.

Five students of the Belarusian State University have twice tested positive for COVID-19 without showing any symptoms of the disease. Four other coronavirus patients had arrived from Munich, Amsterdam and Moscow. "All patients have been quarantined since returning from abroad. Their close contacts have been also hospitalized," according to the ministry.

Three patients have been discharged while three others are preparing to leave hospitals soon. Eight patients have mild symptoms of infection and one is in moderately severe condition with positive dynamics. Other patients don’t have any symptoms of infection.

Since early February, specialists of the Republican and Practical Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology have carried out more than 16,000 tests for COVID-19. Some 2,583 people remain under medical control, but none of them have any symptoms of infection.

A SARS-like virus outbreak caused by the COVID-19 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV) was reported in China’s city of Wuhan, a large trade and industrial center with a population of 12 million, in late December 2019.

Cases of the new coronavirus have also been reported from about 130 countries and territories, including Russia, which has 63 coronavirus cases. 

The World Health Organization says that the novel coronavirus cases across the globe have exceeded 160,000, with about 6,000 deaths. The WHO has officially described the situation with the novel coronavirus as a pandemic.

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