An Iranian woman wearing a mask walks past a mural displaying her national flag in Tehran. AFP Photo
Tehran: Iran on Wednesday reported 15 new deaths from the novel coronavirus and 586 additional cases, bringing the overall toll to 92 dead and 2,922 infected.
"The number of confirmed new cases in the past 24 hours is 586," health ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour told a televised news conference.
"Fifteen (people) have unfortunately lost their lives."
In a response to the outbreak, Iran has shut schools and universities, suspended major cultural and sporting events, and cut back on work hours.
US President Donald Trump had said Saturday he was ready to aid Iran with the virus outbreak if the Islamic republic asked for assistance.
"Those who have deprived the people of even medicine and food through sanctions, who have done the most vicious things... they appear with a mask of sympathy and say that we want to help the nation of Iran," President Hassan Rouhani said, in a clear reference to the United States.
"Our people know well that you are lying," he said in response, speaking at the weekly meeting of his cabinet in remarks aired on state television.
Washington pulled out of a landmark nuclear deal and reimposed crippling sanctions on Tehran in 2018.
Rouhani said the US must first lift sanctions blocking medicine purchases to prove its honest intent to help.
"This is the first step... to free banking relations for purchasing medicine, transferring medicine and shipping medicine and food," he said.