Syria’s President Assad, wife are recovering from COVID-19, says presidential office

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Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his wife Asma are recovering from COVID-19 and will soon resume their full duties after ending a period of isolation at home, the president’s office said on Wednesday.

The office had said on March 8 that al-Assad, 55, and his 45-year-old wife, who announced her recovery from breast cancer in 2019, had tested positive for COVID-19 after showing minor symptoms and that they would work in isolation at home.

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“The laboratory and X-ray indications related to their health condition are returning gradually to normal,” the office said in a statement, the first public update on the couple’s condition since they fell ill.

Syria has seen a sharp rise in infections since mid-February, a member of the government’s coronavirus advisory committee told Reuters in early March as the country kicked off its vaccination campaign.

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Health and aid officials say it remains difficult to gauge the full scale of the outbreak given the lack of testing facilities in a health system devastated by a decade of war.

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