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Germany sends respirators, other medical equipment to Italy

19 marzo 2020 | 23.11
LETTURA: 1 minuti

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Seven tonnes of equipment including respirators arrived in Italy on Thursday from Germany and are destined for hospitals in the northern regions at the epicentre of the country's dramatic coronavirus epidemic.

The equipment arrived at Pratica di Mare military airport near Rome from the German city of Cologne aboard two Italian airforce planes.

The health system of the Lombardy region is no longer able to cope with the number of coronavirus patients, officials have said.

Two-thirds of Italy's more than 3,405 deaths from Covid-19 have occurred in Lombardy and over half of its 41,035 confirmed cases have been in the north.

Eight million face masks are due to reach Italy this week from countries including Egypt, China, Turkey, Brasil and Germany and Ukraine, Italy's foreign minister Luigi Di Maio said in video on Facebook on Thursday.

France and China are each sending two million face masks to Italy while the government has signed a contract with China for a further 100 million face masks for medics who are risking their lives at the front line of the coronavirus epidemic, especially in northern Italy, foreign ministry sources said.

Italy is working on procedures to make sure the face masks and other equipment sent from abroad arrive quickly and are not held up at customs, according to the foreign ministry sources.

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