Skip to main content

Have Iraqi religious centers contributed to the spread of coronavirus?

With the increase in the number of coronavirus victims in Iraq, the role of religious centers in curbing the spread of COVID-19 has come under scrutiny.
Members of the civil defense team spray disinfectant to sanitize surrounding of the Kufa mosque, following an outbreak of the coronavirus, in the holy city of Najaf, Iraq February 27, 2020. Picture taken February 27, 2020.  REUTERS/Alaa al-Marjani - RC2RDF9QBKYW

The Iraqi Health Ministry has confirmed that the number of positive cases of the new coronavirus in the country has reached 35 and that two people have died. Experts, however, said that they think there are many more cases than this and that there will be many more to come. The Health Ministry does not have sufficient capabilities to control the numbers of infected people and prevent the spread of COVID-19, the experts added.

In such circumstances, religious gatherings in holy shrines, mosques and other religious centers have turned into a source of concern because of their potential role to accelerate the spread of the disease.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.