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Abkhazia confirms first case of novel coronavirus

The patient has been hospitalized and isolated, he is currently in a satisfactory condition

SUKHUM, April 7. /TASS/. The first case of the novel coronavirus has been documented in Abkhazia, Abkhazia’s chief sanitary physician Lyudmila Skorik told reporters on Tuesday.

"The Republic of Abkhazia has confirmed the first case of the novel coronavirus. The health ministry has confirmed today that the first case of the novel coronavirus infection in Abkhazia has been documented in the city of Gagra," she informed.

According to her, the patient has been hospitalized and isolated. He is currently in a satisfactory condition. "The patient arrived from a work trip to Moscow," Skorik said.

Abkhazia’s state border with Russia will be shut from 00:00 April 8 until April 20, the decree signed by Acting President of Abkhazia Valeri Bganba earlier on Tuesday informs. "To restrict entry to the Republic of Abkhazia for all citizens through crossings at the Abkhazian-Russian border, excluding diplomatic workers of foreign states accredited in Abkhazia, military personnel of Russia’s FSB border directorate, the united Russian military base and drivers of vehicles carrying out international cargo deliveries," the decree says.

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, roughly 1,350,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 74,000 deaths have been reported. That said, over 286,000 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.

To date, a total of 7,497 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 494 patients having recovered from the virus. Moscow accounts for the majority of cases (5,181). The country’s latest data indicates 58 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.