TASHKENT, Tajikistan

Tajikistan reported Thursday the first coronavirus cases in the country.

The Ministry of Health and Social Protection announced that 15 people, 10 in Khujand and five in Dushanbe, have been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Meanwhile, the country made it compulsory for people to wear protective mask upon the decision taken by the Coronavirus Prevention Center during a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Kokhir Rasulzoda.

With the decision, a break is announced for all university students in the country starting from May 4.

On April 28, the ministry said that 319 people, including 126 health workers, had been hospitalized with suspicion of pneumonia in Dushanbe, and 11 of them passed away at hospital.

On April 6, it also announced that four others in Khujand also died of pneumonia.

After originating in China last December, the coronavirus has spread to at least 185 countries and regions. Europe and the US are currently the worst-hit regions.

The pandemic has killed nearly 228,000 people, with total infections exceeding 3.2 million, while more than 984,000 have recovered so far, according to figures compiled by Johns Hopkins University in the US.

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