Fears are growing across the Middle East that coronavirus has infiltrated the main pilgrimage route, which could lead the deadly pathogen to vulnerable refugee populations, causing perhaps unprecedented public health crises across the region.
The concern is centred on the Iranian shrine city of Qom, which is thought to be a hub of the disease and the likely source of its spread elsewhere in the country and in neighbouring states, where infected travellers have been diagnosed in recent days.
The situation in Iran is much more dire than official statistics suggest, according to a report in the BBC. The report indicates that there have been 210 deaths in Iran due to Coronavirus. This would mean the number of coronavirus cases in the country would be more than 10,000. This leads to more cause of concerns for people who returned from Iran in the past month. This comes as 2,000 people have already returned to the country from Iran while many more will be brought back soon.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said that in co-operation with relevant entities in the Kingdom, it will take all precautionary measures in order to guarantee the safety of Bahraini citizens currently present in Iran before their arrival in the Kingdom. These will include all necessary preventative measures following their arrival at the Bahrain International Airport, including screening and quarantine procedures in order to ensure the safety of citizens and residents and public health in the Kingdom. The ministry has called on all Bahraini citizens currently in Iran to register their details by calling 973 17227555.