Russian specialists conduct over 400 coronavirus tests in Lebanon

TASS Russian News Agency | Aug 11, 2020 at 5:04 PM

MOSCOW, August 11. /TASS/. Specialists of Russia's Microbe Anti-Plague Research Institute sent to Lebanon to help fight the coronavirus pandemic conducted over 400 COVID-19 tests, the Russian sanitary watchdog Rospotrebnadzor reported on Tuesday.

"The tense situation with the coronavirus infection persists in the Lebanese Republic," the watchdog said in a statement.

There is a high risk of the aggravation of the sanitary and epidemiological situation and the spread of infectious diseases in the republic as a result of the man-made disaster and in the conditions of the hot climate, the statement says.

"Rospotrebnadzor's specialized anti-epidemiological team can provide for the research of several hundred tests a day, working fully autonomously with a high level of biological safety for protecting the staff and the environment. As of today, over 400 novel coronavirus tests have been conducted," the sanitary watchdog said.

Specialists of Russia's Microbe Institute were sent to Beirut on August 5 at the request of the Lebanese Republic to render assistance in preventing sanitary and epidemiological threats as a result of the man-made disaster. The team includes the Institute's leading specialists with the experience of work amid the outbreaks of dangerous infections in African, Southeast Asian and CIS countries.

A powerful blast at a warehouse ripped through Beirut's port on August 4, generating a shockwave that either destroyed or damaged hundreds of buildings and left over 300,000 people homeless. At least 164 were killed and about 6,000 were injured in the massive blast while dozens went missing.

According to the data of the Lebanese Interior Ministry, a fire started by welding work caused the detonation of more than 2,700 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, which had been seized by the customs service and stored in the port for six years.