Serbia donated 1,000 coronavirus test kits to the Public Health Institute in Pristina, as part of the region’s co-operation in the fight against COVID-19, the spokesperson of the Kosovo Ministry of Health, Faik Hoti confirmed for KoSSev.
According to Hoti, on the other hand, Kosovo „allowed medical teams from Serbia to enter Kosovo periodically to provide medical services to members of the Serb community, at the request of mayors from Serb-majority municipalities.”
He added that the Kosovo Ministry of Health, through the Institute for Public Health, was also testing all minorities, including Serbs, as well as providing professional protective equipment to health personnel in Serb-majority municipalities.
„The pandemic should help people show solidarity and help each other to protect the health of citizens equally,“ Hoti told KoSSev.
The liaison officer with Pristina, Dejan Pavicevic was in charge of delivering the donation via the Jarinje crossing, Pristina-based Gazeta Express previously reported.
Previously, Hoti announced via Facebook that Kosovo will receive an additional two thousand test kits today and that it will be revealed who won the tender to provide between 10,000 to 13,000 tests for Kosovo.
The Belgrade donation arrived just two days after Serbian Health Minister, Zlatibor Loncar spoke with Kosovo Health Minister, Arben Viti , on a video conference about the current situation in the field regarding the coronavirus outbreak, co-operation and pandemic measures.
The video conference dedicated to the COVID-19 crisis in the Western Balkans was hosted by Italy.
After the conference, the Italian ambassador to Pristina, Nicola Orlando praised the commitment of health ministers „in overcoming distances and focusing on the health of all citizens as a top priority“.
The very next day, US ambassadors to Belgrade and Pristina, Anthony Godfrey and Philip Kosnett sent a joint message of support to the two ministers.
Joint Message from U.S. Ambassadors to Kosovo and Serbia on Benefits of Mutual Cooperation. Thanks to Ambassador Orlando for facilitating this teleconference. https://t.co/veav1xStyj pic.twitter.com/sVaePkOPVq
— Ambassador Philip S. Kosnett (@USAmbKosovo) April 16, 2020
„In this time of pandemic, it is encouraging to see health ministers cooperating as neighbors to serve and protect all communities in Kosovo and Serbia,“ Kosnett underlined.
Godfrey said that Belgrade and Pristina are working together „in concrete and practical ways to save lives during the pandemic, sharing equipment and expertise.“
„Our hope is that these confidence-building measures will show the necessity of cooperation. We will only save lives if we work together,“ he said.
The ambassadors thanked the Italian government for hosting the video conference, stressing that „together we can defeat COVID-19“.
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