Khamenei tells Iranians to avoid gathering during Ramadan amid coronavirus outbreak

Ayatollah Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei on Thursday called on Iranians to pray at home during the holy Muslim month of Ramadan, as the country’s health ministry said the death toll from his coronavirus had increased from 117 to 4110.

Iran has reported 4,110 deaths and more than 66,000 new coronavirus infections, making the country’s Covid-19 epidemic one of the worst in the world.

Khamenei called on the Iranians to avoid mass gatherings, such as collective prayers, during Ramadan, which begins in the last week of April this year.

“In the absence of public gatherings during Ramadan, such as prayers, speeches … which we are deprived of this year, we must not neglect worship, invocation and humility in our solitude”, a he said in a televised speech.

“We have to create humility and supplication in our families and in our rooms.”

Iran, which announced its first Covid-19 cases on February 19, is by far the worst affected by the pandemic in the Middle East, according to official figures.

But there has been speculation abroad that the actual number of deaths and infections in the country may be higher.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)