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Iranian deputy health minister says he has contracted coronavirus

TEHRAN, February 25. /TASS/. Iranian Deputy Health Minister Iraj Harirchi has tested positive for novel coronavirus, the official said in a statement on Tuesday.

"I would like to inform you that I have contracted coronavirus. Since yesterday afternoon, I have had a fever, the preliminary tests are positive [for coronavirus]," ILNA news agency quotes the minister as saying. "I have isolated myself starting Monday evening."

"Iran will overcome the virus in the next few weeks," the official added. "My condition is not bad, everything is well. I only have a fever," he added.

On February 19, the Iranian Health Ministry reported first cases of novel coronavirus in Iran’s Qom. According to official information, there are about 95 cases of coronavirus documented in Iran, including 15 deaths.

On December 31, Chinese authorities informed the World Health Organization (WHO) about an outbreak of an unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan — a large trade and industrial center in central China populated by 12 million people. The source of the outbreak is the COVID-19 coronavirus. Cases of COVID-19 have been detected in 33 countries, including Russia. WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak in China a global health emergency. Currently, the total number of people infected with coronavirus nears 77,600 in China with over 2,600 reported deaths. Meanwhile, over 27,200 people are said to have recovered from it.