Tajikistan is coronavirus-free, Declares President

The Central Asian country of Tajikistan declared itself free of the coronavirus on Tuesday.

Tajikistan has not registered a single case since the beginning of January,’’ President Emomali Rahmon said in a speech to parliament.

“We can say with confidence that we no longer have the coronavirus,’’ he continued, saying Tajiks had kept calm and cool in the face of uncertainty.

“But that does not mean that we should be careless,’’ Rahmon warned the country’s nine million people.

With that in mind, he said hygiene measures should continue to be observed and air travellers from abroad must quarantine for two weeks.

Tajikistan, a small, former Soviet republic bordering war-torn Afghanistan, is one of the poorest countries in a region that generally lacks modern health care facilities.

Earlier in the pandemic, there had been criticism of the authoritarian country’s leadership for its relatively relaxed approach.

For example, Tajikistan was one of the last countries worldwide to finally halt top-flight football matches.

According to week-old figures, 13,308 coronavirus infections have been officially reported and 90 people have died. 

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