European Union announces new coronavirus support for member states

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    EU commissioner for Health, Stella Kyriakides gives a press conference after a Ministers of Health meeting on the coronavirus COVID-19 at the EU headquarters in Brussels on March 6, 2020. (Photo by Kenzo TRIBOUILLARD / AFP) (Photo by KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP via Getty Images)

    The European Union launched measures to support its member states in tackling the coronavirus pandemic, the European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Stella Kyriakides, said Monday. As of today, we will be launching joint procurements for protective equipment, testing kits and ventilators,” Kyriakides tweeted after a video conference with European counterparts.

    “Essential goods and medicines must be able to cross borders as smoothly as possible,” the European health commissioner added, calling for “solidarity and cooperation” across the EU.

    European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen and European Council president Charles Michel on Monday met with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel to discuss the EU response to the COVID-19 outbreak. 

    Macron tweeted that European partners were “working together” to make “rigorous decisions” on a joint course of action.

    Europe has become the new epicenter of the outbreak, with the number of confirmed cases and registered deaths across the continent climbing.

    The European Commission spoke out against the implementation of internal border controls as COVID-19 spreads across the continent.

    “People who are sick should not be denied entry but given access to healthcare,” it said in a statement, outlining that member states must always admit their own citizens, and should facilitate the transit of EU citizens and residents who were returning home.

    Source: CNN

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