Covid-19 closes museums in Tehran once again

July 15, 2020 - 15:50

TEHRAN – All museums in Tehran have gone on lockdown again for one more week following the increase in the number of people infected with the coronavirus, IRNA reported.

According to the Coronavirus Control Operations Headquarters, museums’ staff must be present at work during this period, but the museums are closed to the public to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, said Mohammadreza Kargar, the director of museums and historical properties at the tourism ministry on Wednesday.

The country closed cultural heritage museums and historical sites across the country in a preventive measure amid fears of coronavirus outbreak back in February, but as the coronavirus lockdown was eased, they were reopened in early May.

Due to a sharp rise in the number of coronavirus infections and deaths, all art and cultural centers, universities, schools, seminaries, English schools, libraries, movie theaters, museums, mosques, beauty salons, and several other entities have been shut down as well.  

On Tuesday, Cultural Heritage, Tourism, and Handicrafts Minister Ali-Asghar Mounesan announced that revenues from museums and historical sites were almost eight billion rials (about $190,000) during the first three months of the current Iranian calendar year (started March 20), a sharp decline compared to around 300 billion rials (over $7 million) in the same period last year.

He also noted that most of the income is spent on preserving the historical sites and museums, but due to the closure of the sites, the ministry is facing a challenge in maintaining these places.

Earlier this week, several provinces including Bushehr, Hormozgan, and Zanjan extended the closure of their museums and some historical sites as they are on the red risk zone.