Iran’s Health Ministry’s spokeswoman confirmed the fall in the number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the country and warned that the situation is not stable, urging people to continue observing the health protocols.
Speaking at the daily press conference on Saturday, Sima Sadat Lari said that despite the decreasing trend of the coronavirus figures in the country, the number of new infections in northern provinces is on the rise, according to IRNA.
She added however that none of the cities in the country are now classified as “red”, the highest level on the country's color-coded risk scale, and that 160 cities are in the orange situation while 340 cities are in yellow situation.
Iran has opted for a color-coded system of white for low-risk parts of the country, yellow and orange for medium-risk and red for high-risk areas.
Lari said 134 people died from Friday to Saturday, bringing the total death toll to 54,574.
New cases drop below 6,000
The spokeswoman also said the number of new cases rose by 5,760 to 1,194,936 during the same period.
“Of the new cases detected in the 24-hour period, only 732 patients have been admitted to the hospitals.”
She said that at least 942,548 patients have recovered from the coronavirus infection so far or have been discharged from hospitals across the country.
Iran has managed to decrease the number of new coronavirus cases and deaths in recent weeks following the government’s imposition of new restrictions in the country since November 21.
The government has been trying to import foreign vaccines for the treatment of the coronavirus patients amid the US sanctions which have made it hard for Iran to buy the vaccines.
On Thursday, Central Bank of Iran (CBI) Governor Abdolnaser Hemmati said the government has found a solution to pay for foreign supplies of the vaccines.
Hemmati said he had ordered transfer of 200 million euros from CBI funds in a foreign bank for purchase of coronavirus vaccines, according to Press TV.
He said that the CBI had used two banks in Turkey and in Europe and a branch of an Iranian bank to transfer the funds from South Korea to a Swiss bank processing payments related to a vaccine scheme run by the World Health Organization.
The Office of Foreign Assets Control in the US, he added, had granted a special permit to the South Korean bank to release part of the Iranian funds that have been blocked in the country because of US sanctions.
Hemmati’s remarks came a day after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani dismissed unconfirmed reports suggesting that Iran may fail to make payments needed to obtain supplies of vaccines to battle COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
Rouhani said Iran would take delivery of abundant supplies of the vaccine from abroad while it pursues plans for manufacturing an effective and safe version of the vaccine at home.