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Kazakh President Cancels International Women's Day Events Due To Coronavirus

Kazakh President Qasym-Zhomart Toqaev (file photo)

NUR-SULTAN -- Kazakh President Qasym-Zhomart Toqaev has cancelled public events devoted to International Women's Day due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Toqaev made the announcement via Twitter on March 2, six days before International Women’s Day.

"I made a decision not to hold a celebratory gathering and a concert in Nur-Sultan scheduled to mark International Women's Day [on March 8]. This has been done due to the spread of the coronavirus around the world. I wish all women great health and happiness," Toqaev wrote.

Each year, Toqaev's predecessor Nursultan Nazarbaev, who ran the energy-rich Central Asian nation for almost three decades before he resigned on March 19 last year, held special meetings with the country’s noted women on March 8.

The meetings were broadcast by television channels and later large concerts to celebrate International Women's Day were held.

In recent days, due to the coronavirus, Kazakhstan has either suspended or restricted air flights to several countries.

Kazakhstan has yet to report any confirmed cases of people carrying the virus, which has infected over 89,000 people across more than 60 countries since first emerging in China late last year.

The death toll from COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus, rose on March 2 to over 3,000 people.

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