The total tally of coronavirus or COVID-19 cases confirmed in Iran crossed 200,000 on Friday, as the state media continued to warn about the lack of proper social distancing despite a new rise in the number of infections.
The daily number of deaths crossed 100 most of this week, for the first time in two months. The Health Ministry of the nation announced 120 deaths in the earlier 24 hours taking the total to 9,392 and 2,615 new cases for a total of 200,262.
Iran Grapples With COVID-19
State television showed several families picnicking without masks or social distancing. Reminded about the fact that one person was dying every 12 to 15 minutes, an unidentified family father said: "My daughter was getting depressed. We really had to get out of the house." The parliamentary research center issued a report in April suggesting that the actual number of coronavirus deaths might be almost twice the official figure.
State television quoted Hossein Erfani, head of the Health Ministry's contagious disease care department, as saying provinces will be allowed to decide locally to impose or suspend restrictions in the fight against the virus. "Depending on whether it is high-, medium- or low-risk, each province and county will decide on imposing necessary restrictions or suspending them," Erfani said. Six of Iran's 31 provinces are currently high-risk coronavirus areas, state said.
(With agency inputs)