The partial shutdown imposed in Tehran a week ago has been extended to October 16 as the government announces new penalties.

Iran has placed additional restrictions on the capital, Tehran, and imposed penalties on those who break the rules as coronavirus cases continue to rise in the country.

A partial shutdown carried out in Tehran a week ago was extended to October 16 on Saturday as authorities classified the city as red on a color-coded scale that indicates the severity of the pandemic.

The closure includes cafes, universities, schools, museums, salons, cinemas, events and exhibitions, sports centers and even Friday prayers, among others.

Wearing face masks outdoors has also been mandatory in Tehran since Saturday. Violation will result in a fine of 500,000 rials (US $ 1.6).

Businesses in the city have been ordered not to provide services to people who do not wear masks as the breach of outlets is even about to close.

Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said on Saturday that 195 more people had died from the novel coronavirus across Iran, bringing the death toll to 28,293.

In Iran’s 32 provinces, most of which are classified as red, 3,875 more active COVID-19 cases have been recorded, bringing the total to 496,253.

Iran recorded its highest death toll in a day on October 7, when 239 deaths were reported. The highest daily cases, 4,151, were recorded the day before.

Following a meeting of the national anti-coronavirus task force on Saturday, President Hassan Rouhani announced new penalties for those who ignored the pandemic rules.

The maximum fine has been set at 2 million rials ($ 6.6 million) for those infected with the virus who knowingly put others at risk by not being quarantined for two weeks.

Government spokesman Ali Rabiei said Saturday that people found COVID-19 positive are being followed in a variety of ways, including the location of their phone. “If they leave home, they will be fined heavily,” he said.

In the meantime, President Rouhani thanked the people for adhering to health protocols as they watched Arbaeen, the 40th day since the anniversary of Hussein’s death.

Rouhani also said Iran has allocated $ 100 million to purchase coronavirus test kits that get results faster without specifying the origin of the purchase.

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