MOSCOW, March 26./TASS/. The Russian and French presidents, Vladimir Putin and Emmanuel Macron, discussed the situation around the coronavirus pandemic in a phone call on Thursday, the Kremlin press service reports.
"Directly ahead of an emergency video-conference summit of G20, they exchanged opinions on the situation regarding the pandemic of coronavirus. Vladimir Putin and Emmanuel Macron informed each other about the measures enforced in Russia and France to fight the spread of the infection and minimize its negative social and economic impact," it said. The presidents "confirmed a bid to continue coordinated efforts in the return of the two countries’ nationals to their homeland, as well to ensure conditions for the transportation of medicines and equipment," the press service said.
"Within the context of joint fight against the virus, they discussed possible cooperation within the framework of the UN Security Council. Besides, the sides discussed key issues of the settlement in Syria and Libya and agreed to continue contacts at different levels," the Kremlin said.
The phone call was initiated by France.
The World Health Organization on March 11, 2020, declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. As of now, over 457,000 people have been infected around the world and about 21,000 have died.
Russia has identified 840 coronavirus cases so far, 38 patients have recovered and two have died. The Russian government has set up an Internet hotline sponsored by the Ministry of Health to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.