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Several countries neighbouring Iran, including Turkey and Pakistan, have decided to close their borders with the country to prevent the transmission of Coronavirus Covid-19.

The decision came after Iran recorded a sudden spike in coronavirus cases, with 43 people reportedly affected. The Middle Eastern nation also reported eight fatalities, the highest toll outside of mainland China.

Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca told reporters that Turkey has closed all highways and railways to Iran. Flights from Iran are also suspended, while air services from Turkey to Iran are still operational.

Turkey and Iran share an almost 500km-long border, with three mainland crossings.

Meanwhile, Iran’s eastern neighbour, Pakistan, has also decided to temporarily shut its Taftan border with Iran, suspending passenger and cargo movement between the two countries.

According to news sources, Pakistani province Balochistan imposed a ban on cross-border travel and issued a health emergency in the areas close to the Iranian border.

Similar border closures were also undertaken by Iran’s other neighbouring countries: Saudi Arabia, Armenia, Iraq, Kuwait and Afghanistan.

Earlier, Russia closed its 4,209km-long border with China due to similar concerns.

Iran reported its first Covid-19 fatality in the city of Qom. The country has ordered the temporary closure of all educational institutions to restrict the virus from further spreading.

Meanwhile, the global death toll due to the coronavirus reached 2,600, with the number of confirmed cases rising to 79,331.