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Sri Lanka’s Education Ministry said that all schools across the island-nation will be shut from July 13-17 following a spike in the number of COVID-19 cases.

In a statement on Sunday, the Ministry said the decision to shut schools was taken following discussions with Education Minister Dullas Alahapperuma and education officials after nearly 400 patients a rehabilitation centre were infected with the virus in the past three days, reports Xinhua news agency.

“Considering the guidelines of the health and safety sectors, it has been decided to give one week leave to all schools to monitor the adverse conditions that may occur in the school sector,” the statement said.

Sri Lankan schools had been shut from March but re-opened two weeks ago after authorities said they had contained the spread of the virus.

However with the new cluster reported, the government said it had decided to shut schools again as a precautionary measure.

The number of positive COVID-19 patients reached 2,617 on Sunday evening after over 94 people tested positive during the day.

A majority of the patients were detected from the Kandakadu Rehabilitation Center while some infected were among those who were repatriated from overseas recently.

The death toll currently stood at 11.

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