Iran suspends officials’ oversea trips due to coronavirus outbreak  

March 4, 2020 - 19:21

TEHRAN- Iran’s Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri, in an order on Wednesday, banned participation of the government staff and officials in international gatherings and exhibitions to lessen the consequences of coronavirus outbreak.

“In line with fulfilment of the president’s verdict, the entire foreign trips of government officials and staff (except for the Foreign Ministry) to participate in the international gatherings and exhibitions will be cancelled until the next announcement,” the vice president said in his announcement.

He further said, “Other exceptional cases will be handled at the request of the highest level official of the relevant body and confirmation of the vice president,” the announcement read.

“The decision has been taken to reduce possible disease transmission to the country from foreign states. Obviously, those officials who have been dispatched abroad on mission will be allowed to attend their job and normal life after their health is confirmed by the Health Ministry,” Jahangiri said.

The virus first emerged in China in December last year and is now spreading in North America, Europe and across the Middle East, sparking fears of a global pandemic. The virus is spreading rapidly in the region, with cases recorded in many countries.

The Iranian authorities have ordered the closure of schools, universities and cultural events in a bid to contain the outbreak. 

According to the Health Ministry, official data on Wednesday showed that a totally 2,922 Iranian nationals have been infected by the virus that 92 have lost their lives.

The ministry also said 552 patients have recovered.

The virus has affected 28 out of 30 provinces in Iran.

On Tuesday, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said it essential that citizens follow health guidelines to help boost the country’s battle against the coronavirus outbreak.

“These guidelines must not be disobeyed, because God has made us duty-bound to feel responsible for the health of ourselves and others,” he said.

He added, “Anything that helps prevent the spread of coronavirus is a good deed and anything that helps spread it is a sin.”

The Leader also said that all must fully cooperate with the Ministry of Health, which is at the forefront of the fight against Coronavirus. 

“The Armed Forces and the sectors related to the Office of the Leader have also been ordered to do the same,” he added.

Elsewhere, Ayatollah Khamenei said, “Coronavirus has affected many countries. Our officials have reported with sincerity and transparency since day one. However, some countries where the outbreak has been more serious have tried to hide it. Of course, we ask God to heal the sick in those countries too.”

MJ/PA

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