In Belarus, a rural paramedic defies the virus to help villagers | AFP

Rural paramedic Nadezhda Kononova is providing an indispensable lifeline to elderly villagers in isolated areas of northeastern Belarus. The country has stood out for its lack of official response since the start of the pandemic, with strongman Alexander Lukashenko repeatedly disputing the seriousness of the virus. Belarus, which has a population of more than nine million people, has reported more than 45,000 coronavirus cases and over 250 deaths.

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