Iran Hits Record One-day Virus Death Toll of 221
Iran reported a new single-day record death toll of 221 from the novel coronavirus on Thursday, after weeks of rising numbers in the Middle East's worst-hit country.
"Unfortunately in the past 24 hours we have lost 221 of our compatriots to the COVID-19 disease," health ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari told a televised news conference. "The death toll has now reached 12,305."
The Islamic republic has been struggling to combat the outbreak since announcing its first cases in February.
"The number of (new) cases identified (since Wednesday) is 2,079," Lari said, bringing the total number of infections to 250,458.
In response to the resurgence of the disease, the authorities have made the wearing of masks mandatory in covered public places and are considering imposing further restrictions in the hardest hit provinces.
Stemming the coronavirus "requires the help of you, dear people, listening to our health advice", Lari said, before again urging the public to wear masks and respect social distancing.