Iranian lawmaker catches coronavirus: media


An Iranian soldier wearing a mask stands guard in downtown Tehran, Iran, Feb. 23, 2020. (Photo: Xinhua)

TEHRAN, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- Iranian lawmaker Mahmoud Sadeghi has caught the novel coronavirus, officially named as COVID-19, the Tabnak news website reported Wednesday.

"I give this message (of being affected by the virus) while I am less hopeful about staying alive," Sadeghi was quoted as saying.

On Tuesday, Alireza Vahabzadeh, advisor for the Iranian Ministry of Health and Medical Education, said the country's deputy Health Minister Iraj Harirchi was tested positive for COVID-19.

Earlier, Iranian media reported that Mohammad Reza Qadir, president of Qom Medical Sciences University, has also been tested positive for the coronavirus.

Earlier in the day, Iran's Ministry of Health and Medical Education announced that 139 people in the country have been affected by the novel coronavirus and 19 of them died over the past week.