Argentine govt calls on public to stay positive amid pandemic

Professor Gaston Siano welcomes his students during first day of in person classes, as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, in Buenos Aires, Argentina October 13, 2020. (Photo: Agencies)

BUENOS AIRES - Argentina's government on Thursday called on the public to stay positive despite the ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, as a general nationwide lockdown continued into its 30th week.

"We do not have to be overwhelmed by discouragement, because I know that we are all tired and we are all fed up with the lockdown and the pandemic," said the chief of the cabinet of ministers, Santiago Cafiero.

In an interview with a local radio station in Buenos Aires, Cafiero said, "let's not be discouraged, because the truth is that we have achieved many things" since the onset of the outbreak in March.

He listed the government's strengthening of the healthcare system, and measures to shore up "productive and commercial activity throughout the country" among those achievements.

"Today you have almost 90 percent of the country's productive activities, except those related to tourism, gastronomy, culture and entertainment," which continue to be impacted by the pandemic, he noted.

"The government will continue" to help the sectors that "need it most," he added.

Argentina registered its first case of COVID-19 on March 3 and declared a lockdown on March 20 that is set to be lifted Oct. 25. Some 931,967 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Argentina and 24,921 have died from the disease.