Iran has posted a daily record for coronavirus cases as the capital region locked down to combat a new surge in COVID-19 cases.
Iranian authorities have warned of a new surge of the virus spurred by the highly contagious delta variant and a sluggish vaccination program where less than 2 percent of the population of 84 million has received both doses.
The Health Ministry said on July 20 that it had recorded 27,444 new cases and 250 deaths over the previous 24 hours. The previous single day high for cases was in April when the total hit 25,582.
The overall death toll for the country now stands at 87,624 with more than 3.5 million confirmed cases.
The figures came as Iran embarked on the nation’s fifth lockdown with the closing of all bazaars, marketplaces, and public offices, as well as movie theaters, gyms, and restaurants, in both the Tehran Province and the neighboring province of Alborz.
Iran is the hardest hit country by COVID-19 in the Middle East.