Ukrainian PM calls on regions to refrain from holding mass events.

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Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal and Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksiy Danilov have held a conference call with the heads of the regions to discuss the situation with the spread of COVID-19 in Ukraine.

Shmyhal announced the current statistics on the incidence of coronavirus infection and noted that the situation in Kharkiv region remains critical, according to the government portal.

"Some 741 people have fallen ill in Kharkiv region over the past 24 hours – this is an absolute record. Some 418 people fell ill in Sumy region, and more than 200 each in the Kyiv, Poltava, Rivne and Khmelnytskyi regions," he said.

The prime minister heard reports by the Kharkiv regional governor and the head of Kyiv City State Administration on measures to counter the spread of COVID-19. Kharkiv region and the city of Kyiv remain the leaders by the total number of new cases. Shmyhal ordered them to submit proposals to the Ministry of Health to increase the number of beds for COVID-19 patients.

Kyiv City State Administration said it was ready to work out the deployment of mobile hospitals and expand the number of COVID-19 beds at the expense of the National Academy of Sciences and specialized departmental hospitals.

Shmyhal also instructed Kyiv City State Administration and the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection to check local markets for compliance with anti-epidemic rules and to strengthen control over transportation on public transport.

In addition, Shmyhal called on the leaders of all regions to refrain from holding mass events in the near future, including conventions and conferences.

"Solemn events are to be held in various cities on the Defender of Ukraine Day. We ask you to hold a dialogue and work actively with the organizers so that the events take place in a safe environment and in compliance with all anti-epidemic rules," he said.

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