Russia Shuts Down its Border with China Due to Coronavirus Threat

State owned Russia Today reported that Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin issued an order to close Russia’s border with China in the Far East.

The Far East is Russia’s largest region in terms of landmass and it’s also the most remote area of the country.

This decision is following Vladimir Putin’s instructions on Wednesday when he requested that government officials do whatever they can to prevent the dissemination of the Chinese coronavirus.

Furthermore, Mishushtin directed Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova to update the public on a daily basis on the status of coronavirus in Russia. As of now, the Russian government has not confirmed any cases of the virus.

“An order has been signed today, it has become operational,” Mishustin informed ministers in Moscow.

“We will inform everyone today of the relevant measures to close the border in the Far East region and other measures the government has taken [to prevent the spread of coronavirus in Russia].”

Similarly, Moscow temporarily suspended the issuance of electronic visas to Chinese nationals, according to a Foreign Ministry announcement on Thursday afternoon.

These measures will apply to border checkpoints in the Far East and Kaliningrad, in addition to all entry points in the Leningrad region and St Petersburg. On top of that, it advised Russian travelers to not travel to China, unless the trip is absolutely necessary.

The Russian government’s announcements came on the heels of Chinese authorities revealing on Thursday morning that the number of people who caught the virus stood at 7,700 thousand, with at least 170 people dying from the virus. 38 of those deaths took place within the timespan of Wednesday and Thursday.