Closing national frontiers to stop the spread of coronavirus was the right decision in January and February, but keeping them closed now makes no sense, according to Alexander Lukashev, a member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia Today reports.
Lukashev, the director of the Martsinovsky Institute of Medical Parasitology, Tropical and Vector-Borne Diseases, believes that shutting the borders was necessary when Covid-19 was first moving across the world, but there is no reason to keep the country isolated any longer.
“Closing the borders in January/February was very justified and very timely, but keeping borders closed now, in my opinion, is pointless,” the scientist said, speaking at a coronavirus-focused conference. “The virus is so widespread in all countries now that the transfer of the virus across borders will not have much epidemiological significance.”
Russia completely shut itself off on March 30, when it had just 1,264 confirmed Covid-19 cases. Prior to the complete suspension of international travel, the Kremlin opted from mid-February to restrict the entry of people from certain nations, such as China.
As of Thursday, Russia has 502,436 confirmed coronavirus cases, with 261,150 patients having recovered from the disease. According to official government data, 6,532 people have died as a direct result of Covid-19.