Iran has imposed strict Covid measures in the capital Tehran, closing businesses and government offices in an effort to contain a fifth wave of the virus fueled by the highly transmissible Delta variant.
Announcing the measures on Tuesday, Iran’s national virus task force said banks, businesses and government offices in Tehran and neighboring Alborz province will close for the next six days.
Non-essential businesses such as shopping malls and movie theaters have also closed and streets have become largely empty as traffic has been restricted during the local lockdown.
This is the first time Iran has taken such a step, reflecting concerns from health authorities who have warned the country faces a fifth wave of infections due to the spread of the Delta variant. So far, the country has resisted a nationwide lockdown and has instead focused on regional measures.
The move comes during the Eid al-Adha holiday, with traffic police reportedly blocking roads to restrict travel to popular holiday destinations across the country. Local media had reported heavy traffic on Monday, before the restrictions came into effect, as people tried to escape from the closed-off area.
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Earlier in July, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned citizens that the country is facing a fifth wave of infections, urging people to avoid crowds and unnecessary travel while following health protocols to prevent the spread of the virus. prevent viruses.
Iran is the hardest-hit country in the Middle East since the start of the pandemic, with 3.5 million cases and 87,374 deaths from the coronavirus, according to data provided to the World Health Organization.
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