Roundup: COVID-19 cases in Iran rise to 568,896; Iraq sees decrease in daily coronavirus infections


By Liu Xi

CAIRO, Oct. 25 (Xinhua) -- Iran's COVID-19 cases increased to 568,896 on Sunday with an addition of 6,191 new infections. Meanwhile, an Iraqi health official said that the country is witnessing a decrease in daily new coronavirus infections during the last month.

The pandemic has so far claimed 32,616 lives in Iran, the hardest-hit country in the Middle East region, up by 296 in the past 24 hours. A total of 455,054 coronavirus patients have recovered, with 4,969 still in critical condition.

In the meantime, 2,554 new COVID-19 cases were detected in Iraq during the past 24 hours, bringing the total nationwide infections to 451,707.

The death toll from the coronavirus in Iraq rose to 10,623 after 55 fatalities were added, while the total recoveries increased to 381,349 as 3,140 more patients recovered.

"Iraq is witnessing a decrease in COVID-19 infections during the last month, unlike the past few months in which the number of daily infections exceeded 5,000," Jawad al-Musawi, a member of the parliamentary health committee, said in a statement.

However, Al-Musawi expressed his fear of a possible second wave of a high number of infections within the next two months and expected re-imposing restriction measures.

The total number of COVID-19 cases in Turkey climbed by 2,017 to 361,801.

The death toll from the coronavirus in the country rose to 9,799 after 72 new fatalities were added in the past 24 hours, while the total recoveries increased to 314,390.

Saudi Arabia announced 323 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the tally to 344,875.

The recoveries also rose to 331,330 with the reporting of 335 recovered cases. The death toll reached 5,296 cases with the registration of 15 fatalities in the last 15 hours.

Meanwhile, the Israel Institute for Biological Research will begin first clinical trials with some 80 healthy volunteers aged 18-55 to test the safety of its potential COVID-19 vaccine on humans on Nov. 1, officials said on Sunday.

Over 25,000 vaccines have been produced in the institute for the tests, which are expected to last "several months," the institute said in a joint statement with the defense ministry and health ministry.

In the second phase of the trial, the safety of the vaccine is expected to be tested on a larger group of some 960 healthy volunteers. If proved safe for human use, the experiment will go in April-May into its third phase, where it will be tested for its effectiveness on 30,000 volunteers, the statement added.

In Morocco, the tally of COVID-19 cases rose to 197,481 after 3,020 new cases were added, which included 3,301 fatalities and 163,195 recoveries.

In Qatar, 205 new cases of coronavirus infections were detected, increasing the total number to 131,170, including 230 deaths and 128,099 recoveries.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) announced 1,359 new cases, raising the total confirmed cases in the country to 125,123.

The tally of recoveries in the UAE rose to 118,931 after 2,037 more patients have recovered from the virus and the death toll reached 477 with two more deaths.

Kuwait reported 708 new cases, bringing the country's total number of infections to 121,635, of whom 746 have died and 112,771 recovered.

Oman's Ministry of Health announced 1,095 new cases of infections, raising the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 112,932, including 1,174 deaths and 99,278 recoveries.

In Lebanon, the number of COVID-19 infections increased by 1,400 to 71,397, while the death toll went up by three to 565.

Lebanon's Interior Minister Mohammad Fahmi ordered on the same day 63 villages to go under lockdown to curb the spread of the virus.

Palestine reported 453 new coronavirus cases, taking the tally of infections in the Palestinian territories to 62,046, including 519 deaths.

In Algeria, the total number of cases reached 56,143 with an addition of 263 infections which included 1,914 deaths and 39,155 recoveries.

Libya announced on Sunday that 1,639 new COVID-19 cases were recorded on Saturday, the highest daily increase in the country so far, raising the total nationwide infections to 56,013, including 30,731 recoveries and 795 fatalities.

In Jordan, 2,337 new COVID-19 cases and 39 more deaths were recorded, increasing the tally of cases to 53,087 and the death toll to 579.

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