MOSCOW, June 18. /TASS/. Moscow promised to assist Addis Ababa in its fight against the pandemic, and Ethiopia expects deliveries from Russia, Ethiopian Ambassador to Russia Alemayehu Tegenu Aargau said in his interview with TASS.
The envoy said that Ethiopia "still requires some support from friendly countries. The leaders of the two countries [Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed] had a telephone conversation very recently and one of the issues [was] cooperation to combat the pandemic. The Russian side promised to assist Ethiopia in its fight against the pandemic. I believe that we expect material equipment from Russia. We are waiting for it," he said.
The ambassador said that nobody in the entire world was ready for this challenge, which is why mutual support between countries facing a common threat is very important. He noted that earlier Ethiopia had received deliveries from China and other friendly powers which enabled it to significantly boost its testing volumes of the large population. "Test indicators, ventilators, and other support are welcome," the diplomat noted.
He pointed out that Ethiopia is still in the early stages of the pandemic and the number of infections will grow in the coming weeks. Nonetheless, the country is taking measures to efficiently brace for the development of this situation. "There is a challenge, but the government commitment is very high. Hopefully it [the virus] will be contained," Alemayehu Tegenu Aargau added.
The envoy also said that there was no incidence of COVID-19 among Ethiopian diplomats in Moscow. He stressed that the embassy’s staff followed all of Russia’s official regulations to prevent the spread of the infection. "We are also closely working with Ethiopian students and members of the diaspora community. We are OK. We don’t have any problem reported to our embassy," he concluded.
Earlier, Spokeswoman for Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Maria Zakharova reported at a briefing that Moscow had received appeals to aid the fight against the pandemic from 29 African states.