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New COVID-19 cases come in at 21, bringing Kingdom’s tally up to 299

Thursday’s cases show virus’ spread within families

By JT - Apr 02,2020 - Last updated at Apr 02,2020

Minister of Health Saad Jaber speaks during a joint press briefing with Media Minister Amjad Adaileh at the National Centre for Security and Crisis Management on Thursday (Photo courtesy of Prime Ministry)

AMMAN — Twenty-one new coronavirus cases have been recorded in Jordan, bringing the total number of cases in the Kingdom to 299, Minister of Health Saad Jaber announced on Thursday.

During a joint press briefing with Media Minister Amjad Adaileh held at the National Centre for Security and Crisis Management, Jaber said that multiple members of the same family were among the new cases.

The new cases included seven members of a family in Ramtha who were infected through contact with a family member who came from Spain and tested positive for the virus, as well as five members of another family who were in contact with a family member who had come from France.

Among the coronavirus-hit families were also five members of another family who were infected by the father of the family, and two individuals whose father is being treated for the virus at Prince Hamzah Hospital.

Another individual who had come from the UK was also reported to be infected, he said, highlighting that the patient was among those who have been quarantined at the hotels and were released three days ago.

The minister stressed that this case points to the importance of those who left the mandatory isolation at the hotels in Amman and the Dead Sea area abiding by the 14-day self-isolation at home.

The new cases also include an individual who contracted the virus from people who already had been infected and attended a wedding in Irbid, he added.

Jaber also announced the recovery of nine individuals.

Epidemiological inspection teams conducted 1,400 coronavirus tests in all governorates of the Kingdom, he noted.

Also during the briefing, which was live-streamed on Facebook, Adaileh said that, as a result of some people’s lack of responsibility and ignorance towards instructions, “today we registered more than five times the cases reported on Wednesday”.

Highlighting the Kingdom’s efforts to combat the novel coronavirus outbreak, the minister reiterated that the coming days are “the most decisive”, calling on citizens and residents to abide by the instructions issued by authorities.

Reiterating that no one is above the law, Adaileh said that all paper permits are now invalid, stressing that investigations related to the abuse of curfew passes and forged permits are ongoing.

Prime Minister Omar Razzaz has chaired a number of extensive meetings to discuss the economic challenges posed by the coronavirus and the measures the government will take to alleviate burdens on the affected sectors, he said.

The Ministry of Social Development reported that around 210,000 families so far have been affected financially by the curfew imposed as a precautionary measure to combat the pandemic, he said.

He also reiterated that a 24-hour lockdown involving the closure of permitted commercial stores and establishments and a ban on people’s movement across the Kingdom will go into effect at midnight, stressing that only medics from the public and private sectors are exempted.

Adaileh stressed that any violators of the lockdown will be held accountable, noting that there are “no exceptions” for any other sectors.

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