BEIJING, May 20. /TASS/. Russia’s Foreign Ministry plans to open a consulate general in Wuhan, the capital of China’s Hubei province, Russian Ambassador to Beijing Andrei Denisov told an online briefing on Wednesday.
"The city of Wuhan has been well-known to us for a long time. Before Wuhan, there was the city of Hankou. Our country was present in Hankou in the late 19th century, there was a consulate general. Now the Russian Foreign Ministry has decided to reopen the consulate general in Wuhan. We hope that when the budget allows, we will restore our presence in Wuhan," the envoy emphasized.
"I am very pleased to see that life in the Hubei province and the city of Wuhan is returning to normal. Doctors are back home, there are no hospitalized coronavirus patients," Denisov said.
Russia and China agreed in September 2015 to open consulate generals in the Russian cities of Vladivostok and Kazan and the Chinese cities of Harbin and Wuhan. Russia has a consular department at the embassy in Beijing, as well as consulate generals in Guangzhou, Harbin, Shanghai, Shenyang and Hong Kong.
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 4,990,400 people have been infected worldwide and more than 324,900 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 1,961,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.
To date, a total of 308,705 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 85,392 patients having recovered from the disease. Russia’s latest data indicates 2,927 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.