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Armenians Again Warned Against Coronavirus Complacency


Residents wearing face masks in downtown Yerevan

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian on Thursday again urged Armenians to strictly follow anti-epidemic rules amid what he described as relative stability in the rate of coronavirus infection in the country.

Health Minister Arsen Torosian said at a government session that the downward trend in the number of new coronavirus cases in Armenia has come to a stop, adding that sharper declines are hardly expected while the situation remains stable.

“Taking into account the economic activity and the mobility of the population in general, including the number of citizens returning to Armenia, I think it will be very difficult to have fewer cases than we identify daily if the situation I have described is maintained,” Torosian said.

During the past several weeks Armenia’s Health Ministry has reported between 150 and 300 new coronavirus cases and between one and eight Covid-19 deaths a day. This is two to three times lower than at what appeared to the peak of the epidemic in the first half of July when more than 700 new coronavirus cases and about 15 deaths were recorded on a daily basis.

Overall, Armenia has recorded more than 42,000 coronavirus cases and 836 deaths since the start of the epidemic in March.

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian presiding over a cabinet meeting (file photo)
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian presiding over a cabinet meeting (file photo)

At today’s cabinet meeting Prime Minister Pashinian stressed that the current stability is relative and a reversal of the situation may happen at any moment. Pashinian warned the public against complacency based on the observed decrease in the number of new coronavirus cases.

“The average daily numbers today are more than twice lower than in July. But if we do not respond to the situation properly, we will quickly return to the situation observed in July,” he said.

A total of 1,993 coronavirus tests were conducted in Armenia on August 19; 263 citizens were diagnosed with the novel coronavirus. According to the health minister, currently hospitals in Armenia are not overloaded and the coronavirus situation remains manageable.

“No citizen will be left without medical assistance, but citizens must make an effort not to get infected,” Pashinian said for his part.

The Armenian prime minister urged the police to step up their efforts in enforcing mandated mask-wearing in all public spaces and also appealed to the public to show more individual responsibility to stem the spread of infection.

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