US donates ventilators to Russia

22 May, 2020 12:00 AM printer

WASHINGTON: The United States said Wednesday it was donating 200 ventilators to help Russia in the coronavirus pandemic, turning the tables a week after a high-profile shipment by Moscow, reports AFP.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the shipment by posting on Twitter a picture of a military cargo airplane with a US flag and boxes bearing the USAID logo.

“The United States is donating 200 US-produced ventilators to the Russian people to help fight COVID-19,” Pompeo wrote.

“We’ve committed over 15,000 ventilators to more than 60 countries and continue to be a global leader in contributions to fight this pandemic.”

The State Department did not immediately respond to questions on whether and when the shipment was delivered to Russia, which has seen a sharp spike in virus infections.

The image had striking similarities to pictures released by Russia of a shipment of goods on April 1 to New York, which was then a major epicenter of the global illness.

President Donald Trump, who has sought closer ties with Russian President Vladimir Putin, praised the shipment as “very nice.”

Hailing Russia’s “high-quality stuff,” Trump said at the time he was “not concerned about Russia and propaganda, not even a little bit.”