Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has predicted that the COVID-19 pandemic will continue for another six more months in the country which is currently the hardest-hit in the Middle East.
As of Monday, the total number of coronavirus cases in Iran stood at 326,712, with 18,427 deaths.
A total of 284,371 coronavirus patients have recovered, while 4,022 are in critical condition.
“Until we obtain a vaccine that is effective and get a sufficient quantity of it… We will be confronting this situation,” Rouhani said in a statement on Sunday.
However, it is not feasible to “completely cancel economic, social, cultural, and religious activity”, nor to act as prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, he added.
Rouhani asked the public to respect social distancing procedures, saying punitive measures will be announced next week against those who transgress norms and get infected with COVID-19.