Iran on Thursday confirmed 63 more fatalities from the novel coronavirus over the past 24 hours, bringing the nationwide death toll to 7,627.

A further 2,258 people have tested positive for COVID-19, raising the overall count to 143,849, Health Ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said.

Jahanpour said that 112,988 patients have recovered and been discharged from hospitals so far, while 2,543 patients remain in critical condition.

A total of 876,492 tests have been conducted in the country, according to the ministry.

In Iran, one of the countries in the Middle East hardest-hit by the disease, COVID-19 was first detected in the city of Qom on Feb. 19 and then spread throughout the country.

The pandemic has claimed more than 356,100 lives in 188 countries and regions since originating in China last December. The US and Europe are currently the world’s worst-hit regions.

More than 5.71 million cases have been reported worldwide. Nearly 2.37 million people have recovered so far, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.

*Writing by Zehra Nur Duz

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