Russian armed forces aircraft to evacuate citizens from China - agencies

MOSCOW, Feb 1 (Reuters) - Russia's aerospace defence forces, part of the armed forces, will start evacuating Russian citizens on Saturday from China due to the coronavirus outbreak, news agencies reported, citing the Kremlin spokesman.

Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters the evacuation would take place in regions that had been most affected by the outbreak, Interfax and TASS news agencies reported.

Russia joins other countries in evacuating their citizens from China, where the number of cases of the new virus is rising.

Deputy Prime Minister Tatiana Golikova said on Friday that Russia planned to evacuate more than 600 of its citizens now in Wuhan and Hubei province, the epicentre of the outbreak in China, and they will be quarantined for 14 days.

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Russia has already reported its first two cases of coronavirus and restricted direct flights to China, its biggest trade partner. (Reporting by Andrey Ostroukh Editing by Helen Popper )

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