Switzerland Armed Forces are set to deploy troops to help in containing the coronavirus pandemic, which has infected more than 1,000 people in the country.
Army Chief Thomas Sussli, in a tweet, said one of its four hospital battalions would be deployed on Monday for the emergency service.
The battalion will carry out a “special service towards the security and protection of us all,” Sussli wrote.
The news came after Switzerland on Friday announced a raft of measures to halt the spread of the coronavirus, including school closures and tighter border controls.
The government also said it would provide $10 billion to help businesses and workers get through the crisis.
Based on the last count on Friday, 1,125 people have been infected in the small Alpine country, while seven have died from the virus.
Meanwhile, Europe has now become the epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the World Health Organisation.
More cases are now being reported in Europe every day than were reported at the height of the epidemic in China, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a recent news briefing.
“There are more reported cases and deaths in Europe than the rest of the world combined, apart from China,” Ghebreyesus stressed.
The overall death toll from the new virus, which first emerged in Wuhan, in China’s Hubei region in December, has jumped to more than 5,000 globally, including nearly 1,500 in Europe, with total infections topping 140,000