A German medical team arrives at Zvartnots airport, Yerevan, July 13, 2020.

Armenia Again Extends State of Emergency as COVID-19 Spread Worsens


YEREVAN (Combined Sources) — Armenia said on Monday, July 13, it had extended until August 12 a state of emergency to try to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus as the number of daily infections has yet to start declining.

Despite the state of emergency, almost all sectors of the Armenian economy are functioning after businesses reopened in early May to ward off economic collapse.

But the country’s borders remain closed and international flights have not resumed.

Armenia has registered 32,151 confirmed coronavirus cases and 573 deaths so far from COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus.

It is the worst-affected country in the South Caucasus region and hundreds of new infections are still being recorded each day.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said earlier this month that if people did not follow anti-epidemic measures, Armenia might face a new lockdown, which could cause a severe economic crisis.

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His government has made wearing face masks in public mandatory.

Specialists from foreign countries and international organizations arrived in Armenia last month to help the country fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

A team of German healthcare workers arrived on Monday to help their Armenian colleagues deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

They were flown to Yerevan by a German Air Force plane that also delivered medical supplies to the country hit hard by the pandemic.

The 16 medics were greeted at Zvartnots international airport by Armenia’s deputy ministers of health and foreign affairs as well as the German and European Union ambassadors in Yerevan.

“The German experts will be working alongside their Armenian colleagues for two weeks,” tweeted the German Embassy. “We stand at Armenia’s side!”

Topics: COVID-19

According to an Armenian government statement, Germany’s government has organized the mission in collaboration with two European charities and the World Health Organization. The mission is part of a broader EU scheme designed to help partner countries contain the spread of the virus.

Similar medical teams have also been sent to Armenia by France, Russia, Lithuania and Italy over the past month. They were deployed to local hospitals treating COVID-19 patients.

The EU Delegation in Yerevan announced that the German government will also provide coronavirus-related financial aid to Armenia. “Germany will be allocating 2.75 million euros ($3.1 million) for a project addressing COVID-19 in Armenia through research cooperation in order to establish medium to long-term systemic, integrated risk management,” the delegation said in a statement.

Health Minister Arsen Torosyan spoke of a “slight positive dynamic” in the coronavirus crisis, saying that in recent days there have been fewer infected people awaiting hospitalization at home. But he cautioned that virtually intensive care hospital beds remain occupied by COVID-19 patients.

Fresh figures also revealed that 232 more people have recovered, eight patients have died from COVID-19, while one person carrying the virus has died from other causes.

A total of 135,687 tests have been performed since the beginning of the outbreak in the country, the National Center For Disease Control and Prevention said.

(Stories from Reuters, Panarmenian.net and RFE/RL were used to compile this report.)

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