Virus outbreak in Iran sickens hundreds, including leaders

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — After facing sanctions and the risk of war amid tensions with the U.S., Iran’s Shiite theocracy now has an enemy in the new coronavirus that infiltrated its leadership in plain view of state-controlled media and despite repeated denials of any looming threat. The virus has laid bare the challenges facing the Islamic Republic some 40 years after its founding. There are now over 510 cases of the new virus in the Mideast, with 388 of them in Iran. The Islamic Republic has the highest death toll of any country outside of China, the epicenter of the virus outbreak.