ULAN BATOR, Jan. 4 (Xinhua) -- The Mongolian government on Monday decided not to publicly celebrate the traditional White Moon festival or the Lunar New Year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"The government has decided not to celebrate the White Moon this year to prevent a further spread of the COVID-19, as gatherings during the holiday could lead to surging infections," the government's press office said in a statement.
The White Moon, one of the most celebrated and important holidays in Mongolia, symbolizes the start of spring and the end of winter. The festival falls on Feb. 12 this year.
The landlocked Asian country also banned celebrations of New Year to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
As of Monday, Mongolia has registered 1,286 COVID-19 cases, among which more than two-thirds were locally transmitted.
The country has so far recorded 878 recoveries and one death. Enditem