Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has tested positive for COVID-19 and is temporarily suspending duties in office, becoming the most recent government official to contract the disease.
It was not immediately clear how severe Mishustin’s symptoms are, though one news agency reported that he had an elevated temperature of 39 degrees. Vladimir Putin indicated that Mishustin would be taken to hospital.
Putin said he will still seek Mishustin’s approval for decisions on economic policy while he’s in isolation. “I plan to remain in active contact by telephone and videolink,” Mishustin said. He and other Russian officials, including Putin, have been conducting public meetings by video link in recent weeks.
Russia confirmed 7,099 new coronavirus infections on Thursday, bringing the country’s official number of cases to 106,498. Russia is now the eighth most-affected country in terms of infections, having surpassed China and Iran this week.