Religious Sites to Reopen in Iran

Holy shrines in Iran will reopen as of Monday and pilgrims can visit the religious sites from sunrise to sunset after a months-long hiatus in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, President Hassan Rouhani announced.

Speaking at a Saturday meeting of Iran’s Coronavirus Fight National Headquarters, Rouhani said the holy shrines across the country will reopen a day after Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of the month of Ramadan.

The custodians of the holy shrines have announced their readiness to open the religious sites to pilgrims from sunrise to sunset, but congregational prayers will not be held in the sites, the president noted.

During the opening hours, pilgrims must observe the health instructions and will not be allowed to stay for long, Rouhani added.

The president also noted that upon a decision from the Coronavirus Fight National Headquarters, museums across Iran will reopen as of Sunday, while plans for the reopening of mosques and shopping centers will be discussed next week.

He further stressed that Iran has passed three stages in tackling the coronavirus epidemic and has now entered the fourth stage, which is containment of the disease.

“In this stage, we will proceed with diagnosis activities using diagnostic kits and other devices to separate the infected people from others.”

The Iranian administration had announced earlier that restaurants across the country will reopen after Ramadan within the framework of health regulations.

Universities will be also reopening as of June 6, and sports matches will take place without spectators.

The Health Ministry said on Friday the number of people infected with COVID-19 in Iran has surpassed 131,600, of whom more than 102,000 have fully recovered from the disease.

Zero deaths were reported in 14 provinces on Friday.

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