February 28, 2021 23:24 Wuhan Pneumonia” Vatican Ambassador diagnosed expert today: It is not recommended that the Pope visit Iraq in March

Iraq welcomes the visit of Pope Francis, and propaganda to welcome Francis appears in the capital Baghdad.  (AFP)

Iraq welcomes the visit of Pope Francis, and propaganda to welcome Francis appears in the capital Baghdad. (AFP)

2021/02/28 23:24

[Real-time news/comprehensive report]Pope Francis is expected to visit Iraq from March 5th to 8th, but experts suggest canceling or delaying the trip because the local Wuhan pneumonia (new coronavirus disease, COVID-19) epidemic is severe and the Vatican The ambassador to Iraq Mitja Leskovar (Mitja Leskovar) only reported today (28th) that the diagnosis has been confirmed.

According to a report by the Associated Press, Leskovar reported a confirmed diagnosis today. The embassy said Leskovar had mild symptoms and was being quarantined. Leskovar, as an important person of the Pope’s visit to Iraq, was originally expected to accompany the Pope on the itinerary. His diagnosis caused experts to worry about the safety of the Pope’s trip.

Francis has not indicated that he will cancel his trip to Iraq, and the Iraqi side is also happy to see the Pope’s visit, highlighting the stability of the country.

Health experts pointed out that Iraq has been devastated by war and economic problems. Professionals have left, which has severely damaged the medical system. Most of the reported cases in the country are the more infectious British variant virus.

Virology expert Navid Madani pointed out that Iraq, Syria and Yemen are in poor conditions, and Middle Easterners are known for their hospitality. If the Pope visits, Iraqis may be too enthusiastic and violate the epidemic prevention regulations. Madani called for changes to the itinerary or to an online virtual format, giving priority to the safety of the Iraqi people.

Pope Francis is 84 years old. About 20 people from the Vatican and more than 70 journalists have all been vaccinated during this trip. However, infectious disease expert Bharat Pankhania pointed out that Vatican personnel have been vaccinated, but the Iraqi people have not. He called on the Pope to cancel the trip because if they are infected, the Iraqi people who come to see the Pope will die first. .

The Iraqi government strengthened its anti-epidemic regulations in the middle of this month, imposing curfews, closing schools and mosques, and allowing restaurants and cafes to provide only take-out services. But many Iraqis are still reluctant to wear masks, and some people even question the severity of the epidemic.

According to world real-time statistics (Worldometer), Iraq today notified 3248 confirmed cases, bringing the total number of cases to 695,489, resulting in 13,406 deaths.

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