JUST IN: Iran shut down schools, universities over Coronavirus

By Isa Amodu, Abuja with agency report
Schools and universities in Iran will be closed until early April due to the deadly coronavirus outbreak which is fast spreading, the health minister said on Thursday.
“People should not consider this as an opportunity to go travelling. They should stay home and take our warnings seriously,” Saeed Namaki said at a televised press conference.

Elementary and secondary schools as well as universities were closed in the virus-hit country until March 20, Namaki added.

He asked citizens to stay at their homes, saying traveling is very dangerous these days as the virus is spreading fast across the country.

The death toll in Iran from the new coronavirus has climbed to 107, the country’s Health Ministry announced on Thursday.

Fifteen additional people died of the virus as new cases were reported across the country in the last 24 hours, spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said at a news conference in the capital Tehran.

The latest figure brought the total number of infections to over 3,510, said Jahanpour.

COVID-19 emerged in Wuhan, China, last December and has now spread to over 80 countries.

The global death toll is over 3,200, with more than 95,000 confirmed cases, according to the WHO.

Notably, some 52,000 former patients who contracted the virus have recovered.

The World Health Organization, which had declared the outbreak an international health emergency, recently updated the global risk level to “very high”.