ANKARA, February 24. /TASS/. Turkey has announced the border with Iran will be closed in the face of a spike in confirmed coronavirus cases in Iran, the Turkish Interior Ministry said on Sunday.
"The Turkish-Iranian border has been closed over the coronavirus," A Haber television said citing the Interior Ministry’s statement.
Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said Ankara was suspending transport services with a neighboring country, in particular, flights, trains and vehicle crossings.
The first cases were confirmed in Iran on February 19. According to official data, now their number has reached 43, the death toll has risen to eight.
In late December 2019, a pneumonia outbreak caused by the COVID-19 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV) was reported in China’s city of Wuhan, an economic and industrial megacity with a population of 12 million. The World Health Organization declared the new coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency of international concern, characterizing it as an epidemic with multiple locations. Apart from China, 27 other countries, including Russia, have reported confirmed coronavirus cases. According to the latest reports, China has confirmed over 77,000 cases of patients infected with the novel coronavirus. The virus’ death toll has hit 2,442, yet more than 22,900 patients have recovered from the disease.