A military crago plane from Russia carrying masks and medical equipment left for the US early on Wednesday, April 1. A brief statement released by the Russian Defense Ministry confirmed the development. The footage released by the ministry showed the cargo plane with hundreds of boxes of supplies. It also showed the moment it took off for the US, which is 8,000 kilometers away.
The shipment is on its way after a call between the US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday, March 30. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters that Trump and Putin discussed the pandemic and lack of protective gear in the US.
The US President, prior to the confirmation by Moscow, had announced the planeload of supplies arriving from Russia. Later, Peskov confirmed it by saying that there is no exception to the effects of the pandemic and that it is of "global nature".
Criticism over 'ulterior motives'
Even as the US emergency stockpiles run dry some American experts see the help as a Russian ploy, says the RT a news media outlet. The experts complained that this was an ulterior motive by Russia to bring in their spies to the country.
Previously Russia had also sent supplies to Italy as the situation worsened in the country in the past weeks. They had sent 600 much-needed ventilators, as well as masks and teams of medical experts. Italian top officials have also expressed their gratitude for the action.
The two presidents have also discussed the oil markets and has directed the energy ministers to speak. During the call, the two leaders agreed that there is a need to stabilize the global energy markets. The market was seeing a low that it hasn't experienced in the past 18 years or so.
The relationship between the US and Russia has been complicated in the past few years after Russia annexed Crimea in 2014 and several other strains. The US had imposed sanctions on certain Russian companies because of this.
In the US there was a surge of cases with the reports saying that now there is 180,000 with 16,000 new positive tests reported on Tuesday. The total number of the dead in the US is more than 3,000.
Russia is on the way to build an emergency hospital just for the patients of the coronavirus. Moscow is under lockdown and recently the Russian President visited a hospital in Moscow. A doctor who greeted the President has been tested positive for coronavirus. There is a fear for the health of the Russian President since then. The Moscow authorities have also told the Russian president that the actual number of cases would be higher than the ones that are detected till now.