Iran’s Zarif calls for cooperation against coronavirus

Iran’s deputy health minister has tested positive for the coronavirus, according to a tweet by the ministry’s media adviser and a report by the semi-official ILNA news agency.

Iraj Harirchi had given a news conference on Monday denying claims from a member of parliament that 50 people had died from the virus in the country. According to official numbers released by the health ministry on Tuesday, 15 people have died among 95 confirmed cases in Iran.

The virus has now infected more than 80,000 globally, killing at least 2,700.

Tuesday, February 25
Zarif calls for cooperation against coronavirus
Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif has called for regional cooperation against the coronavirus.

“Like other viruses – incl terrorism – #COVID19 knows no borders and doesn’t distinguish between ethnicities or faiths,” he tweeted.

“To combat it, neither should we. In line with #HOPE, Iran calls for more regional cooperation incl long overdue Joint Center for Disease Control & Prevention,” he added.

Spain reports new case
Spanish health authorities have identified a case of coronavirus in Catalonia on Tuesday, the first case in mainland Spain, according to the La Vanguardia newspaper.

The case is the country’s fourth after three infected tourists from Germany, Italy and Britain were detected in the Canary Islands and in Mallorca.

Bahrain, Oman confirm more cases
Oman has identified two new cases of coronavirus, while Bahrain has confirmed nine new cases, the two countries health ministries reported.

Both Bahrain and Oman reported their first cases on Monday.

Austria confirms first case
Austria has confirmed its first two cases of coronavirus, a spokeswoman for the health authority in the province of Tyrol has said.

The infected individuals are two Italians who live in the province and were probably infected in Italy’s Lombardy region, Tyrol governor Guenther Platter was quoted as saying by local media.

Croatia confirms its first case
Croatia has confirmed its first case of coronavirus infection in a patient hospitalised in the capital Zagreb, Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic has said.

“The patient is in the Zagreb clinic for infectious diseases. It is a younger person and has milder symptoms. He is in isolation and his condition is good at the moment,” Plenkovic told a news conference.

Health Minister Vili Beros said that the patient had stayed in Milan from February 19 to 21.

Iran deputy health minister and MP have coronavirus
Iran’s deputy health minister and an MP have been infected with the new coronavirus, according to a ministry official and the MP in question, amid a major outbreak in the Islamic republic.

“The coronavirus test for Mr Harirchi, the deputy health minister who was on the front lines combating the coronavirus, was positive,” Alireza Vahabzadeh, a media adviser to the health minister, said in a tweet.

Iraj Harirchi coughed occasionally and appeared to be sweating during a press conference on Monday with government spokesman Ali Rabiei.

MP Mahmoud Sadeghi wrote on Twitter: “My corona test is positive … I don’t have a lot of hope of continuing life in this world.”

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