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Coronavirus in Iran to Linger at Least Until Year’s End: President

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President of Iran Hassan Rouhani has cautioned all people to observe the health protocols to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, saying the country will be grappling with COVID-19 until at least the end of the current Iranian year.

Speaking at a Tuesday meeting of the Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution, President Rouhani said the coronavirus outbreak is by no means over and the country will have to struggle with the pandemic until at least the year’s end, which falls in March 2021.

“Watchfulness and observance of the health principles must still be on the agenda of everybody, and attending the unnecessary gatherings must be avoided,” the president emphasized.

President Rouhani also highlighted the administration’s efforts to contain the coronavirus pandemic over the past five months, adding, “Despite all efforts and the very good measures that have been taken in the fight against the disease and for the treatment of the patients, we still witness an increase in the number of infections in a number of cities because the coronavirus is unknown.”

The president then warned that gatherings and ceremonies have been the major factor in a new wave of the coronavirus outbreak in Iran, stressing that using face masks would greatly reduce the risk of spread of the disease.

Pointing to the administration’s plans to produce masks with low prices, President Rouhani said wearing masks in indoor places and public gatherings will be obligatory as of July 5, 2020.

“We’ll keep to the path in the fight against the coronavirus and are still determined to extend restrictions in certain centers and places whose reopening is not necessary,” President Rouhani noted.

Iran has seen a new surge in coronavirus cases in recent days. On Monday, Iran recorded its highest death toll from COVID-19 within a 24-hour period with 162 deaths.

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