Malaysia reports 36 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths

Malaysia reports 36 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths

Medical workers wearing protective suits pass by barbed wire
Medical workers wearing protective suits pass by barbed wire at the red zone under enhanced lockdown in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, on May 11, 2020. (Photo: REUTERS/Lim Huey Teng)

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia reported 36 COVID-19 cases and no new deaths on Friday (May 15), the health ministry said.

The country has recorded a total of 6,855 infections and 112 fatalities.

READ: Malaysia may again tighten COVID-19 restrictions after May 18 if cases surge: Health ministry

READ: Malaysia to open 'almost all' economic sectors from May 4 with health protocols in place, says PM Muhyiddin

Of the 36 new COVID-19 positive cases reported on Friday, 28 are foreign nationals.

Fourteen COVID-19 patients are currently in intensive care, with five requiring ventilators.

There were 88 recoveries on Friday, bringing the total number of those who have fully recovered and discharged to 5,439 cases or 79.3 per cent of the cumulative COVID-19 cases.

INTERSTATE TRAVEL BAN STILL IN FORCE

The interstate travel ban is still in force even though the government has allowed spouses living in different states to meet during the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO).

Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the government was aware that many were longing and missing their loved ones but that the interstate travel was still prohibited to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

READ: Malaysia bars citizens from going overseas, foreigners from entering country for 2 weeks to curb COVID-19 spread,says PM Muhyiddin

“We allow spouses living in different states to meet on humanitarian reasons. We understand many who have not seen their parents for two months as the law prohibits interstate travel.

“The rule is still in force, there are no exceptions ... still subject to the standard operating procedures (SOP) even for single people.

“Please be patient, when it is time to ease the ban then we will do it but as of today, the ban is still in force,” he told a daily press conference on Friday.

Malaysia said on Thursday it will ease a ban on mass prayers in mosques, starting from Friday and ahead of this month's Hari Raya festival, as it gradually relaxes curbs that have helped rein in the coronavirus.

The news follows last week's re-opening of many businesses in Malaysia.

The capital, Kuala Lumpur, is among Malaysia's federal territories which will allow prayers by congregations limited to 30 or fewer, said Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri, the religious affairs minister.

The measure excludes Malaysia's 12 remaining states, which have their own laws on religious matters, but Zulkifli said they were free to adopt similar measures if they wished.

Mass prayers have been banned since around mid-March in a partial lockdown after more than 2,300 people were infected in the country's biggest outbreak, following a religious gathering at a mosque attended by about 16,000 people.

Although new daily cases have declined steadily, schools and colleges will stay closed until June 9.

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Source: Reuters/Bernama/ic

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