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Iran reports first Mers virus death

Iran has reported its first death from the Middle Eastern respiratory virus (Mers), according to the official news agency.

The Irna news agency quoted Health Ministry official Mohammad Mahdi Gouya as saying that the virus has killed a 53-year-old woman in Kerman, a city in south-eastern Iran. An Iranian newspaper reported two cases there yesterday.

It remains unclear how they contracted the virus and authorities have given no further details about the infections.

Mers is part of the coronavirus family of viruses, which includes the common cold and Sars, or severe acute respiratory syndrome. Mers can cause symptoms including fever, breathing problems, pneumonia and kidney failure.

The virus, first reported in Saudi Arabia, has seen cases spread across the world since its discovery two years ago.

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