An infectious disease expert has warned of a “disaster” in Iran if the authorities failed to impose a travel ban during Nowruz, the Persian New Year holiday, to stem the spread of coronavirus.

Highlighting that the virus was spreading in Iran even faster than China, Masoud Mardani of the Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences said the authorities were slow to respond to the outbreak.

“The pandemic has spread to other cities from Qom because the city could not be isolated in a timely manner,” said Mardani, who is also a member of the Iranian coronavirus science council.


Read more: Expert warns of 'disaster' in coronavirus-hit Iran