Nepal seeks international help to fight COVID-19 pandemic

KATHMANDUWritten By: Saloni MurarkaUpdated: May 04, 2021, 12:48 PM IST

Health officials wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) checks document as people arrive for a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Kathmandu, Nepal Photograph:(Reuters)

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Nepali authorities have been struggling to contain the rapid rise of virus cases

Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli on Monday addressed the nation and appealed to the international community to help Nepal in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. 

During the address, he also announced the temporary suspension of domestic and international flights until May 14. 

"Since we are living in an interconnected and interlinked world, a pandemic like this spares no one and no one is safe. I would like to request our neighbours, friendly countries and international organisations to help us with vaccines, diagnostic equipment and kits, oxygen therapy, critical care medicines and critical care furniture to support our ongoing efforts to combat the pandemic," the prime minister said in English at the end of the speech. 

Nepali authorities have been struggling to contain the rapid rise of virus cases.

"We are of the view that vaccines and critical care medicines are global goods and everyone should have access to it,” he added. 

The prime minister also urged the people to extend support in the government’s effort in following the prohibitory orders to contain the spread of the deadly virus. 

He also requested people to be cautious as the daily coronavirus is rising in the country. 

As of Monday, as many as 41 districts out of the total 77 have been placed under prohibitory orders.

Oli's address to the nation came amid a political crisis. He had decided to seek a vote of confidence in the House of Representatives next week on May 10, as he is facing a crisis inside his party, Nepal Communist Party-Unified Marxist-Leninist. 

Nepal Monday reported 7,448 new coronavirus cases with 37 fatalities in the last 24 hours. 

The total tally of coronavirus cases in the country now stands at 3,43,418.