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EghtesadOnline: Iran’s coronavirus taskforce is returning lockdown restrictions to the capital starting Saturday to curb the relentless spread of the infectious disease, as fresh cases and deaths continue to climb.

Mohsen Farhadi, a senior official in the Health Ministry, told ISNA on Friday that earlier quarantine measures concerning the city of Tehran will come into force on July 18 for one week.

The restrictions include the closure of coffee shops and recreational centers and a ban on religious, cultural and social gatherings as well as sport activities involving more than one person.

Farhadi noted that the measures will be in place for one week and if the number of cases, hospitalizations and deaths drop, they will not be extended.

“One-third of government employees in Tehran will be permitted to begin remote working from the start of the week,” he said.

According to Farhadi, the same restrictions were also reimposed in many other cities with high virus transmission rates, as part of a targeted lockdown plan.

The daily count of confirmed coronavirus cases in Iran reached 2,379 on Friday, taking the national tally to over 269,400, Health Ministry Spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said.

The Covid-19 pandemic claimed the lives of 183 in a 24-hour period, bringing the country’s death toll to 13,791. More than 3,500 are in critical condition.

Lari said, “Iran has carried out almost 2.1 million diagnostic tests to detect the deadly infection.”

Nearly 233,000 have recovered from the viral disease since the onset of the pandemic some five months ago. The spokeswoman also updated the number of hard-hit provinces of Iran to 10 out of 31.

Global infections surpassed 14 million on Friday and fatalities from the contagious illness crossed 594,000.

Iran Tehran Taskforce Virus coronavirus lockdown