News ID: 269469
Published: 0243 GMT May 26, 2020

Iran lifts curbs on restaurants, cafés after two months

Iran lifts curbs on restaurants, cafés after two months
AFP

Iran further eased restrictions aimed at curbing the spread of the novel coronavirus Tuesday by allowing restaurants and cafés to accept customers.

Deputy Health Minister Mohsen Farhadi told reporters in a video press conference on Tuesday that all restaurants can resume their activities while observing certain health protocols set by the Health Ministry. 

“Restaurants which before this decree were only allowed to deliver food will be allowed to accept customers as of today,” Mohsen Farhadi said.

Farhadi called on restaurants to respect health protocols to ensure social distancing of two meters, a measure he said would reduce client numbers by 50 percent.

Iran has allowed a phased reopening of its economy and gradual relaxation of restrictions since early April.

Museums and historical sites across the country reopened on Sunday, while holy shrines opened their doors to the people on Monday.

Iran has already lifted a ban on inter-city trips and malls, with large shopping centers resuming activities.

Meanwhile, President Hassan Rouhani said on Saturday all government employees working from home must return to their offices on May 30.

The country suspended economic, sports and cultural activities as of early March, following reports of the first coronavirus cases on February 19, when it announced its first two deaths.

Health Ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour reported 57 additional COVID-19 deaths in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of fatalities in the country to 7,508.

Jahanpour said 1,787 new cases of infection over the same period brought Iran’s caseload to 139,511.

A total of 109,437 people have recovered and been discharged from hospitals since the outbreak which began in the city of Qom on Feb. 19, according to the Health Ministry’s spokesman.

“We are seeing a stable process in the majority of provinces,” Jahanpour said, adding that the southwestern province of Khuzestan was still classified as “red,” although the number of infected cases was declining.

Red is the highest level on the country’s color-coded scale of risk in relation to its coronavirus outbreak.

More than 5,600,000 cases have been reported in the world since the virus emerged in China last December. The US, Brazil, and Russia are currently the worst-hit countries in the world.

The pandemic has killed over 348,000 people worldwide, while nearly 2,400,000 people have recovered from the disease.

 

IRNA and AFP contributed to this story.

 

 

   
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