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Humanitarian cooperation

22 Jun 2020

More PPE delivered to Belarus from China

More PPE delivered to Belarus from China

MINSK, 22 June (BelTA) – Another humanitarian cargo with personal protective equipment (PPE) to help Belarus respond to COVID-19 has arrived from Guangzhou, China. The cargo was sent to the National Center for Medical Response of the Belarusian Healthcare Ministry. It was procured by the World Health Organization (WHO) and funded by the European Union in line with the project to address the COVID-19 pandemic in the Eastern Partnership countries, BelTA has learned.

“The plane brought personal protective equipment. The cargo weights 49 tonnes. It includes over two million face masks, one million respirators, face shields, and gowns. The cargo has been supplied under the ‘Solidarity for Health’ initiative which is financed by the European Union and implemented in association with the WHO. All PPE are meant primarily for healthcare workers who are at the frontline of our response to COVID-19, facing a higher risk of exposure to the virus,” WHO representative to Belarus Batyr Berdyklychev said.

According to him, more shipments of PPE will follow. “Other activities include teaching healthcare workers and strengthening the capacity of the healthcare system to respond to epidemics. Unfortunately, COVID-19 might not be the last epidemic, so healthcare systems should be ready for this. I would like to thank the EU for its generous financial assistance and the Healthcare Ministry for cooperation in this field. I would also like to congratulate all healthcare workers on their professional holiday and wish them health and wellbeing,” Batyr Berdyklychev added.

Head of the European Union's Delegation to Belarus Dirk Schuebel stressed that it is necessary to work together in the wake of the pandemic. “This is why the European Union encourages social distancing and measures to curb the spread of the virus. Together with its member states and financial institutions, we act as Team Europe, combining resources and assisting in various areas with our partner countries, including Belarus. For example, two weeks ago, Poland shipped the necessary equipment in line with the EU civil protection mechanism,” he noted. “Over the past months, we have worked closely with the United Nations and the Belarusian Red Cross to ensure safe working conditions for healthcare and social workers all across the country. These activities are aimed at improving the safety of the most vulnerable citizens amid the coronavirus pandemic. Today, we are happy to deliver another supply of medical materials and protective gear to support Belarus’ healthcare system. I would like to thank the WHO for the logistics support of this shipment,” Dirk Schuebel added.

Belarus Deputy Healthcare Minister Boris Androsyuk thanked the EU and WHO for the humanitarian aid. “This cargo will be distributed and delivered to the regions in the coming days. We are gearing up for a possible second wave, but we hope that this will not happen. This help is much needed anyway. Thank you very much, let me assure you: the cargo will be sent where it is most needed,” he noted.

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