Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Putin had tested negative for the coronavirus and was “absolutely in good health”.
Peskov told reporters in a conference call that as “several people” in Putin’s entourage have fallen ill with Covid-19, the president “must take a responsible stance and not endanger the health of his colleagues “. The spokesperson did not say who tested positive.
When asked why Putin had met Assad if there were concerns about his exposure to people who tested positive, Peskov said the event took place before the decision to quarantine was made.
Pressed by reporters who brought up the fact that Putin told Russian athletes on Monday that there were people sick with the coronavirus around him, Peskov reiterated that there was “nothing illogical” in the schedule of Putin.
“First, I can say that Putin did not meet Assad at the end of the day, it was at the start of the working day. And everything else, while the doctors were finishing their studies and the necessary procedures. … a decision was made. made. There is nothing illogical here. [when the meetings happened], the doctors were still doing their tests, “Peskov said.
“No one’s health was in danger,” he added.
The Russian president has acknowledged the existence of “identified cases of coronavirus in his environment”, according to a statement from the Kremlin.
Putin also raised the situation during a call Tuesday with his Republic of Tajikistan counterpart Emomali Rahmon, adding that he should therefore be quarantined for “some time”.
The Kremlin statement said that Putin’s scheduled meetings for the current week will now be assisted by videoconference.
“The isolation does not directly affect the president’s work. But there will be no face-to-face events for some time,” Peskov added.