Russian prime minister says he tested positive for virus

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Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin attends a video conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, April 14, 2020. Putin is calling for action to shore up the Moscow-led economic alliance of ex-Soviet nations amid the coronavirus pandemic. Speaking in a conference call Tuesday with leaders of four other nations, which are part of the Eurasian Economic Union, Putin called for a joint response to the outbreak. (Dmitry Astakhov, Sputnik, Government Pool Photo via AP)

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MOSCOW (AP) — Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin says he has tested positive for the new coronavirus and has told President Vladimir Putin he will self-isolate.

First Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Belousov will temporarily perform Mishustin’s duties, but the prime minister said Thursday that he would stay in touch on key issues.

Mishustin, 54 ,was named prime minister in January.

During a video call, Putin voiced hope that Mishustin would continue taking part in drafting policies to shore up the Russian economy, which has been hurt by the virus pandemic.

In Russia, the prime minister oversees the economy and answers to the president.

It was not immediately clear when Putin last met with Mishustin in person. The Russian president has minimized meetings and switched to holding video conferences with officials during the pandemic.

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