Russia Sends IL-76 Military Transport Aircraft Carrying Coronavirus Aid To Serbia

Russia Sends IL-76 Military Transport Aircraft Carrying Coronavirus Aid To Serbia

Russian Defence Ministry (MoD) sent military medics and equipment from Moscow to Belgrade on Friday to help Serbia fight the coronavirus pandemic.

The first Ilyushin Il-76 plane of Russia’s Aerospace Force with equipment and specialists has departed for Serbia from the Chkalovsky airfield to help the Balkan country fight the novel coronavirus, the Defense Ministry of Russia reported on Friday.

“The plane will deliver a forward group of military medics, virologists and epidemiologists with the modern equipment for epidemiological diagnostics and disinfection measures to the Batajnica aerodrome (20 km northwest of Belgrade),” the ministry said.

Russia’s Defense Ministry reported earlier on Friday that an air task force of Il-76 planes had been set up at the Chkalovsky aerodrome near Moscow to deliver aid to Serbia.

Overall, Russian military transport aircraft are set to make 11 flights to Serbia to deliver military medics, virologists of radiological, chemical and biological protection troops, special medical equipment and also protective gear and 16 items of military hardware.

“The plane will deliver a forward group of military medics, virologists and epidemiologists with the modern equipment for epidemiological diagnostics and disinfection measures to the Batajnica aerodrome (20 km northwest of Belgrade),” the ministry said.

In total, the Ministry of Defense will transfer 87 military virologists and doctors, equipment, special equipment, protective equipment and 16 units of military equipment with eleven flights.

According to the latest data from the Ministry of Health of Serbia, 31 people died from coronavirus in the country, the total number of patients reached 1,171.

On April 2nd, Russian President Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation with Serbian President Alexander Vučić. The presidents discussed the measures taken by the two countries to counter the coronavirus pandemic as well as opportunities for practical cooperation in this area. The two leaders agreed on the provision of humanitarian aid to Serbia in order to fight the spread of the infection in the spirit of traditional friendly bilateral relations. This aid, including sending experts, will mostly be provided by the Russian Defense Ministry.

This came in follow up of a call by the Serbian Ministry of Internal affairs for the government to ask Russia for help.

“At today’s meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Serbia, it invited the government to ask for help from the Russian Federation because of the situation with the coronavirus,” a representative of the Serbian Interior Ministry told RIA on March 26th.

According to a note circulated in Serbia, at the cabinet meeting headed by Prime Minister Ana Brnabic, the Ministry of the Interior presented the proposal to seek Russian support on specific issues, based on the cooperation agreement between the two countries in emergency situations.

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