Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani called on Saturday for big gatherings such as weddings and wakes to be banned to stem a rise in coronavirus infections, but insisted the country’s economy had to stay open. Shortly after Rouhani’s televised speech, a police official in Tehran announced the closure of all wedding and mourning venues in the capital until further notice. Iran has been gradually relaxing its lockdown since mid-April, but has recently reported a sharp rise in the infection rate. The death toll on Saturday rose by 188 over the previous 24 hours to 12,635, while the total number of diagnosed cases reached 255,117, up by 2,397 during the same period, Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said on state TV. “We must ban ceremonies and gatherings all over the country, whether it be wakes, weddings or parties,” Rouhani said. “Now is not the time for festivals or seminars,” he said, adding that even university entrance exams may have to be suspended.