Armenian Prime Minister tests positive for coronavirus

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan says he and his family tested positive for coronavirus.

Elad Benari ,

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan announced on Monday that he and his family had tested positive for the new coronavirus and that he would be working from home, AFP reports.

Pashinyan said in video message posted on Facebook that his "coronavirus test was positive yesterday" and that his wife and four children were also infected.

He did not have any "visible symptoms" and would be working from home "to the best of my ability", Pashinyan added in the clip he recorded himself.

Armenia, which has a population of around three million people, has registered 9,492 coronavirus cases and 139 deaths to this point.

COVID-19 patients have overwhelmed hospitals and health officials last week said that intensive care beds could be soon reserved for patients with the best chance of survival.

Health Minister Arsen Torosyan has said that out of 186 intensive care units in the country reserved for virus patients, only 32 are empty and those would soon be filled.

Pashinyan's announcement came nearly one month after Armenia lifted a state of emergency imposed in March to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

He has acknowledged failings in his government's coronavirus response including efforts to enforce anti-virus measures.

Pashinyan was elected prime minister in the wake of mass popular protests he led two years ago against veteran leader Serzh Sarkisian and his Republican Party.