MOSCOW, June 9. /TASS/. Russia and Egypt have postponed events of the Year of Humanitarian Cooperation to the last quarter of 2020 because of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Some of the events will be held next year, Russian Special Presidential Envoy for the Middle East and Africa and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said in an interview with Egypt’s newspaper Al-Ahram.
The interview was posted on the Russian Foreign Ministry’s website on Tuesday.
"2020 was declared the Year of Humanitarian Cooperation between Russia and Egypt. But because of the novel coronavirus pandemic, it was agreed with the Egyptian side to postpone the Year’s program events to the fourth quarter of the current year, with a prolongation to 2021," he said.
Russian and Egyptian Presidents, Vladimir Putin and Abdel Fattah al-Sisi agreed in 2018 to declare 2020 the Cross Year of Humanitarian Cooperation between the two countries.
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 7,210,900 people have been infected worldwide and more than 408,900 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 3,550,900 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.