The death toll due to coronavirus hits 19 in Iran

On Wednesday, President Hassan Rouhani stated that Iran had no plans to quarantine any “cities and districts” in response to the country’s coronavirus outbreak, which according to the health ministry had resulted in deaths of 19 people, state TV reported.

The highest death toll after China

However, there were plans to implement some restrictions at holy Shi’ite sites and terminate few sermons on Friday, the Islamic Republic’s traditional day of public prayer, according to the Health Minister Saeed Namaki.

Iran has registered the highest number of deaths from the virus outside China, where it broke out in late 2019. A spokesman from the Health ministry, Kianush Jahanpur said 139 people had been infected.

Officials declared Iran’s first deaths and infections from the coronavirus as recently as last week, and the sharp increase in numbers in a short duration has resulted in Iranians to scrutinize authorities online and blame them of a cover-up, charge officials have refused.

Rouhani blamed the United States, who according to him is a longtime enemy, of trying to paralyze the country using fear. “We must not let America add a new virus to the coronavirus by halting our social activities by spreading tremendous fear,” said Rouhani, as per the state TV.

Later, Namaki said that some decisions had been taken that still required Rouhani’s approval.

“We have decided to impose partial visit restrictions on holy Shi’ite sites and Friday prayer sermons in some cities will not be held this week,” Minister Namaki told state TV. He added that the shutting down of schools and few universities might be extended for yet another week.

Authorities had issued orders regarding the cancellation of concerts and soccer matches and the shutting down of schools and universities in several provinces, and have asked Iranians to stay at home.

Clobbered economic Condition

Pictures of buses and metro stations being disinfected in Tehran were published by Iranian media, were banners in main streets urged Iranians not to shake hands and touch surfaces in public places.

Many of Iran’s neighbors have shut down their joint borders and banned flights from Iran because of the fears over the virus, which could hurt even more the already fragile economy of the Islamic Republic. 

Kuwait, Lebanon, Iraq, Oman, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Afghanistan, and Pakistan have all reported cases of coronavirus involving people who traveled to Iran.

Rouhani also stated that coronavirus must not transform into an enemy weapon that prevents business in Iran.

The economy of Iran has been clobbered since the United States withdrew from a multilateral nuclear deal in 2018 and reimposed sanctions on Tehran.

“Corona should not be turned into a weapon of our enemies for shutting down work and production in the country,” Rouhani said.

Hello, I’m Anna Yeo. If you like my news coverage, please drop a good word in my inbox. I’m journalist by profession and have been part of many major reporting across the globe. I like to write crisp and factual news. I have completed my masters degree in journalism. Feel free to contact me at [email protected]

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