Mon, 01 Jun 2020

Coronavirus Tests Central Asia's Strength

IWPR.net
30 Mar 2020, 16:32 GMT+10

Governments across Central Asia are scrambling to deal with the coronavirus crisis, with some requesting substantial packages of international aid to help them fight the outbreak.

As well as imposing the region's most stringent lockdown restrictions, Kyrgyzstan asked international bodies for extensive aid packages of financial assistance and help to ensure medical supplies and food security.

On March 26 Kyrgyzstan received the IMF's first disbursement in the form of a 121 million US dollar to help address the pandemic.

Although the official position was that there were no shortages of food or equipment, on March 25 Russian newspaper Kommersant reported Bishkek had requested a long list of medical supplies from Moscow as well as deliveries of wheat and cooking oil.

Medical workers in Kyrgyzstan have also used social media to complain that that they have not been provided with masks or other necessary supplies, with many forced to buy these items themselves.

Coronavirus Tests Central Asia's Strength By Timur Toktonaliev, IWPR

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