Coronavirus: Iran passes 1 million COVID-19 cases

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Iran on Thursday surpassed one million confirmed cases of Covid-19 infection, the health ministry said in the Middle East country hardest hit by the pandemic.

The Islamic republic has recorded 1,003,494 coronavirus infections since announcing its first cases in February, ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said on state television.

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The virus has claimed a total of 49,348 lives in Iran, according to official figures, which even the health minister acknowledges fall short of the true number due to screening protocol issues.

Over the past 24 hours, 358 new deaths were recorded from Covid-19 and another 13,922 confirmed cases of infection, Lari said.

The number of fatalities, however, appears to have slightly eased in past days after soaring to a daily average of more than 400 for much of November.

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