A man wearing a mask rides past the Colosseum in Rome. Picture: Alessandra Tarantino/AP
A man wearing a mask rides past the Colosseum in Rome. Picture: Alessandra Tarantino/AP

Islamic State warns terrorists to avoid Europe until coronavirus passes

By Brian Niemietz/New York Daily News Time of article published Mar 16, 2020

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New York - Islamic State has warned its terrorist group to stay clear of Europe until the coronavirus is under control.

Would-be martyrs learned of the travel ban in the Islamic State newsletter al-Naba just before the weekend got under way, according to outlets including Homeland Security Today.

The newsletter reportedly urges the group's militant operatives outside of Europe not to enter the continent, while asking supporters and insurgents already there not to leave.

Terrorists serving the Islamic State are also reminded to wash their hands and cover their mouths when yawning and sneezing.

The warning reportedly included a full-page infographic teaching Islamic State members how to avoid spreading the pandemic.

Nearly 175,000 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed worldwide - more that 6,700 of those cases fatal. Italy, where the virus spread quickly last week, has recorded 1,809 fatalities. There have been 335 coronavirus deaths in Spain and 127 in France, according to Johns Hopkins University's Coronavirus Resource Center map.

There have been no reports of coronavirus in Syria, where Islamic State formed, though health statistics coming from the war-torn country are likely to be incomplete.

Health officials have recommending "social distancing" as a means of containing the spread of the deadly virus worldwide.

tca/dpa

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