Bulgarian President self-isolates after aide tests positive for Covid-19

Bulgarian head of state President Roumen Radev has gone into self-isolation after the chief secretary of his office, Dimitar Stoyanov, tested positive for Covid-19, the President’s office said on October 29.

Stoyanov has been on leave since October 26 and his most recent contract with Radev was on October 24.

On the instructions of the regional health inspectorate in Sofia, Radev and other staff who had been in contact with Stoyanov self-isolated.

Radev is among senior state officials in quarantine either because of being in contact with people who tested positive for Covid-19 or having tested positive themselves.

Prime Minister Boiko Borissov announced on October 25 that he had tested positive and is in quarantine. Prosecutor-General Ivan Geshev is in quarantine after a member of his family tested positive.

Radev has been at the centre of controversy regarding quarantine. He had been in contact with the Bulgarian Air Force commander, who tested positive, but Radev’s quarantine was lifted on October 24, after just a day, by the then head of the Sofia regional health inspectorate, Pancho Penchev. The quarantine of Borissov, who had been in contact with Deputy Minister Nikolai Nenkov, was lifted by Penchev the same day.

Penchev’s resignation was accepted on October 26 by Health Minister Kostadin Angelov. The same day, the Health Ministry issued a statement emphasising that mandatory quarantine rules apply equally to all.

The fact of Radev not going into quarantine, and continuing to make public appearances, was the subject of public criticism on October 28 by Borissov.

In other news on the afternoon of October 29 related to Covid-19 in Bulgaria:

The Health Ministry announced that on October 29, 2593 vials of the drug Veklury, the trade name of Remdesivir, used in treating patients with moderate or severe cases of new coronavirus infection, arrived at BulBio NCIPD, a state-owned distributor of medicinal products.

The medicines were to be handed to the regional health inspectorates in the city of Sofia, the district of Sofia, and the districts of Blagoevgrad, Pernik and Kyustendil on the afternoon of October 28, and to the other regional health inspectorates in Bulgaria later in the day.

The November 5 meeting of the Plovdiv city council has been postponed because of the growing number of Covid-19 patients in the city, the council’s press centre said.

Health Minister Angelov’s new restrictions to contain the spread of Covid-19 came into effect on October 29. They include an order limiting the participation in congresses, conferences, seminars, exhibitions and other public events to no more than 30 people.

The council’s leadership is to discuss whether further meetings should be held at the Boris Christoff House of Culture auditorium, which is much larger than the city council chamber, or whether meetings should be held online.

Plovdiv mayor Zdravko Dimitrov is currently in quarantine after testing positive for Covid-19.

(Photo of Radev on October 27, accompanied by officials while addressing reporters: president.bg)

For the rest of The Sofia Globe’s continuing coverage of the Covid-19 situation in Bulgaria, please click here.

The Sofia Globe’s coverage of the Covid-19 situation in Bulgaria is supported by the Embassies of Switzerland and Finland.

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