COVID-19: Putin, Maduro discuss joint anti-coronavirus efforts, says Kremlin

Issues of combating the coronavirus infection were among the topics of a telephone conversation between Russian and Venezuelan Presidents, Vladimir Putin and Nicolas Maduro, the Kremlin press service said on Monday.

"The sides noted the importance of internationally agreed measures to combat the new global threat, including Vladimir Putin’s initiative to create the so-called green corridors, free from trade wars and sanctions, for deliveries of medicines, food, equipment and technologies for the crisis period," the press service said.

"Nicolas Maduro expressed gratitude for the assistance offered by the Russia side, including supplies of testing systems," the Kremlin said, adding that the two leaders agreed to continue contacts at various levels, including between the two countries’ health ministries.

The conversation was initiated by the Venezuelan side.

In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.

On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, over 2,414,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 165,000 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 629,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.

To date, a total of 47,121 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 3,446 patients having recovered from the virus. Russia’s latest data indicates 405 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.

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