WASHINGTON, May 18. /TASS/. The United States will supply 200 ventilators to Russia, a high-ranking representative for the US administration told TASS on Monday.
"In response to [Russian] President [Vladimir] Putin’s request for assistance, [US] President [Donald] Trump offered to donate and deliver 200 ventilators to the Russian people," he stressed. "This delivery represents the rapid fulfillment of that offer."
"The COVID-19 outbreak is worsening in Russia, which has the second-highest number of cases in the world and the highest number of cases in Europe," the representative added. According to him, the ventilators are donated voluntarily. The administration representative noted that the US "is the largest contributor to global public health and has committed over 15,000 ventilators to more than 50 countries" and "is providing critical medical supplies and ventilators to people in need around the world."
The representative did not confirm the report provided by Voice of America, saying that the US will deliver the ventilators aboard military transport this week. For instance, first 50 ventilators manufactured in California will be ready for shipment already on Wednesday. The remaining 150 machines will be ready for delivery on May 26. According to Voice of America, the US is covering all costs totaling $4.7 million of manufacturing and delivery. At the same time, it is particularly stressed that the shipment is not exercised as cooperation between the national defense agencies banned under the current US defense budget.
On Sunday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters at the White House that US authorities were glad to help out Russia in countering the coronavirus pandemic. He revealed that certain coronavirus test equipment and ventilators were already "on its way." Earlier, Trump told journalists that ventilators would be sent to Russia if need be. According to the US leader, he made the suggestion during a phone call with Putin.
In April, Russia sent a shipment of medical equipment to the US to help to tackle the coronavirus spread. Trump then lauded the gesture. Meanwhile, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov also stressed that Moscow would avail itself of Washington’s proposal to supply ventilators if they are needed.