Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin contracted the coronavirus and went into self-isolation.
"It has just become known that the coronavirus tests I passed have come back positive. In this regard, and in accordance with the requirements of Rospotrebnadzor (the Russian Consumer Rights Watchdog), I have to observe self-isolation. It is necessary to protect my colleagues," Mishustin said during a video conference with Putin.
The Prime Minister assured that the government will continue to work in a regular mode, and he proposed to appoint the First Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Belousov as interim head of the Cabinet. Putin supported the proposal.
"What is happening to you now can happen to anyone," Putin said, thanking Mishustin for his work. Putin also promised that he would continue to consult with Mishustin when making decisions on the issues previously discussed with him.
"Without your opinion, without your participation, final decisions will not be made," Putin said, wishing Mishustin a speedy recovery and asking him to call from the hospital.
In turn, Mishustin called on Russians to take their health as seriously as possible during the May holidays.
The Prime Minister's spokesman Boris Belyakov said that all those who have been in contact with Mishustin recently, will be isolated and will undergo additional examination. The spokesman did not give specific names, only noting that the last few weeks the prime minister's personal contacts were as limited as possible.
According to Belyakov, the head of the Cabinet will be in self-isolation in one of the medical institutions under the supervision of doctors.
Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, commenting on the prime minister's diagnosis, said that Mishustin regularly did tests for coronavirus. "He is a person who, I know, is constantly taking tests, constantly trying not to have unnecessary contacts and to protect himself from this disease. Nevertheless, you see what situation we have," Sobyanin said.