BAGHDAD, Oct. 24 (Xinhua) -- The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Saturday that it will provide 2 million U.S. dollars in aid for Iraq to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic, as the Iraqi Health Ministry reported 3,204 new cases in the country.
Wael Hatahit, head of the WHO's emergency team in Iraq, said in a press release that WHO will provide medical assistance for Iraq during the last months of this year to support the country's health sector in confronting the coronavirus pandemic.
In the upcoming two months, the organization will focus on preparing a large shipment of protective equipment including diagnostic devices for medical workers in order to maintain their safety, Hatahit added.
"There will be support during the next year if the pandemic continues," he noted.
"The epidemiological situation in Iraq and the world has witnessed ... an increase in infection with the coronavirus," Hatahit said, attributing the increase of infections mainly to public non-compliance with preventive instructions, lack of awareness of the seriousness of the virus, and lack of commitment to social distancing.
He noted that the only solution to the pandemic is to "wear masks and adhere to social distancing ... and focus on seriously dealing with the disease."
The Iraqi Health Ministry reported 3,204 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, raising nationwide infections to 449,153.
The ministry also reported 55 new deaths and 3,021 more recovered cases in the country, raising the death toll from the infectious virus to 10,568 and the total recoveries to 378,209.
A total of 2,739,678 tests have been carried out across the country since the outbreak of the disease in February, with 15,350 done during the day, according to the ministry.
Iraq has taken a series of measures to contain the pandemic since February when the first coronavirus case appeared in the country.
China has been helping Iraq fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
From March 7 to April 26, a Chinese team of seven medical experts spent 50 days in Iraq to help contain the disease, during which they helped build a PCR lab and install an advanced CT scanner in Baghdad.
Since March 7, China has also sent three batches of medical aid to Iraq. Enditem