February 12, 2020 / 11:01 AM / 16 days ago

Uzbekistan sends protective equipment to virus-hit China

TASHKENT (Reuters) - Uzbekistan is sending 40 tonnes of protective suits, masks and gloves to virus-hit China, the Central Asian nation’s government said on Wednesday, as a fully loaded military cargo plane departed Tashkent.

Uzbekistan’s government has stopped all regular flights to China, its major trade partner and investor, due to an outbreak of a new coronavirus, which emerged there late last year. Chinese authorities have reported shortages of protective medical equipment.

The Tashkent cabinet said in a statement it was preparing a second shipment. It did not specify whether the flights were headed for the city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, Beijing, or another location in China.

Reporting by Mukhammadsharif Mamatkulov; Writing by Olzhas Auyezov; Editing by Alex Richardson

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