TEHRAN (Iran News) – Iran forces will clear the streets nationwide within 24 hours and all citizens will be checked for the new coronavirus in a bid to halt its spread, the military said on Friday.
A newly formed commission has been charged with overseeing the “emptying of shops, streets and roads” within that time frame, Armed Forces Chief of Staff Major General Mohammad Baqeri said.
“During the next 10 days, the entire Iranian nation will be monitored once through cyberspace, by phone and, if necessary, in person, and those suspected of being ill will be fully identified.
The measures were brought into force after Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei ordered the Armed Forces to lead the battle against the new coronavirus and to form a health and treatment task force for the epidemic.
“While commending the services that the Armed Forces have so far provided to the dear people [of Iran], and while emphasizing the need for those services to further expand and continue, it is necessary that these services be organized in the form of a health and treatment base,” the Leader wrote in his edict.
“In addition to establishing such treatment facilities as field hospitals and infirmaries, and so forth, you must focus on prevention of further spread of this disease through necessary means as well,” he added.
In the order, Ayatollah Khamenei said there was “some evidence suggest the possibility of biological attack” through the virus.
“Since there is some evidence that this incident might be a ‘biological attack’, this measure could be also some form of biological defense drill, which would add to national power and strength [of the country],” the Leader said.
Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami also assigned his ministry’s subsidiary organizations with the task of mass-producing liquid disinfectants and protective gear, including face masks, which are currently in high demand and are being freely distributed by health centers countrywide.
The new measures announced by the top general are the most stringent to be imposed in Iran to combat what is one of the world’s deadliest outbreaks of the virus outside China.
Iran on Friday reported that the novel coronavirus claimed another 85 lives, its highest single-day toll since the first deaths were announced on February 19.
“Sadly, 85 people infected with the COVID-19 disease have died in the past 24 hours”, bringing to 514 the overall number of deaths in Iran, Health Ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said in a televised news conference.
“Across the country, at least 1,289 infected people have been added to the list of confirmed patients,” said Jahanpour.
“The total number of patients has therefore reached 11,364 cases,” he said, adding Tehran Province had the most new infections.
Several politicians and officials in the nation of 80 million people have been infected, with some dying from the illness.
The latest suspected case of infection was Ali Akbar Velayati, who advises the Leader on foreign policy.
Velayati fell ill with “mild symptoms” on Wednesday and has been placed in quarantine, according to the Tasnim News Agency quoted a spokesman at Tehran’s Massih Daneshvari hospital for its report.
The hospital, of which Velayati, a pediatrician by profession, is the head, is the main center for coronavirus patients.
AFP, AP and Press TV contributed to this story.
- source : Iran Daily, Irannews