Coronavirus: Five Russian government staff members test positive for Covid-19, reports say

Even with coronavirus raging through Europe and the Americas, Russia’s leadership has confidently rejected the prospect of an emergency at home. 

Vladimir Putin certainly has reason enough to be sanguine about the situation. The number of confirmed cases has yet to accelerate out of control, and his government has acted decisively on a number of fronts from contact tracing to closing its borders. 

But on Thursday night the Kremlin was being tested by reports that the coronavirus had made its way to the heart of government. 

Quoting sources in the Kremlin, three local publications suggested as many as five members of staff may have tested positive: One or two employees of the presidential administration; one member of the presidential administrative directorate; and one member of the cabinet staff. 

There was no indication that any of the staff had been in contact with the Russian president recently. 

Security protocols around the head of state have been stepped up some time ago in response to the threat of the coronavirus. At the end of January, presidential security teams began to temperature screen anyone in breathing distance of the president. Two weeks ago, coronavirus blood tests became obligatory. 

The news that the virus may be edging closer to Mr Putin’s offices stood in stark contrast to his own claim that Russia could be over the crisis within two to three months. A day after visiting the hospital dealing with most of Moscow’s coronavirus patients, the president confidently predicted his country would avoid the worst European scenarios. 

“My colleague tells me that we will deal with coronavirus within two to three months,” Mr Putin told a group of entrepreneurs on Thursday. “That’s not too bad given that some countries say their battle will go on for a very long time. I hope it may be even quicker.”

On Thursday, Russia recorded a record rise in the number of positive coronavirus cases, up 182 to 840. The vast majority of those cases is concentrated in Moscow. 

Source link

Share with your friends!

Products You May Like

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get the latest news
straight to your inbox

Subscribe to our mailing list and get interesting stuff and updates to your email inbox.