President Hassan Rouhani warned Iranians Saturday to prepare to live with the novel coronavirus “for a long time,” as the country gradually rolls back restrictions imposed to curb the outbreak.
People should not assume that “this disease will be eliminated in 15 days or a month: we must therefore follow the instructions for a long time,” Rouhani said during the weekly meeting of the coronavirus taskforce broadcast on state TV.
“We must end all gatherings, be it marriage, mourning, or family visits, until told otherwise by the health minister,” he added.
Coronavirus in Iran
Iran has been battling the Middle East’s deadliest outbreak of the novel coronavirus since reporting its first cases in February.
Health ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said the country’s total number of cases had risen to 169,425 with 2,269 new infections confirmed in the past 24 hours.
He added that 75 people who were infected died in the same period, bringing the overall fatalities to 8,209.
There has been some skepticism at home and abroad about Iran’s official figures, with concerns the real toll could be much higher.
As government employees go back to work in #Iran, President Hassan #Rouhani says mosques are to resume daily prayers throughout the country, even though some areas are seeing high levels of #coronavirus infections.https://t.co/uUbJW9Xub7 pic.twitter.com/57cEU5hjj4— Al Arabiya English (@AlArabiya_Eng) May 30, 2020
Rise in early May
Authorities have progressively lifted restrictions imposed to tackle the virus, and activity has almost returned to normal in most of the country’s 31 provinces.
The rising trajectory of infection figures since a low in early May and the lack of observance of social distancing measures have authorities worried.
According to Rouhani, there is no “second path” for Iran and economic activity across the country must continue.
He announced a further relaxation of restrictions with travel agencies set to resume local tours as of June 13, and cinemas and concerts reopening with only half of venue capacity from June 21.
Coronavirus: Wedding party in Iran caused spike in cases, says President RouhaniA wedding party contributed to a new surge in coronavirus infections in Iran, President HassanRouhani said on Saturday but insisted the country had no ... Coronavirus
US plans to stick to policy of harsh economic sanctions on Iran: Brian HookThe United States plans to stick to its policy of harsh economic sanctions on Iran in an effort to bring it to the negotiating table on issues such as ... Middle East
Coronavirus: Iran records highest daily toll of 3,574 new casesIran announced 3,574 new coronavirus infections Thursday, its highest daily count since the outbreak began in February.For more coronavirus news, ... Coronavirus