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ISIS urges its followers to beat coronavirus by covering their sneezes

Official instructions include "put trust in God and seek refuge in Him from illnesses" and "cover the mouth when yawning and sneezing."

ISIS's weekly newsletter has warned members of the deadly coronavirus. 
AFP Contributor/GETTY
For the most up-to-date news and information about the coronavirus pandemic, visit the WHO and CDC websites.

Countries around the world, including the US, are blocking international travel and establishing quarantines over fear of coronavirus' spread. One group that's issuing similar health sensibilities? ISIS. The terrorist organization's weekly newsletter, al-Naba, often instructs its followers to carry out attacks in Europe and abroad. But this month it advised instead: "The healthy should not enter the land of the epidemic and the afflicted should not exit from it," according to Homeland Security Today

According to the US security publication, ISIS also issued health advice such as "put trust in God and seek refuge in Him from illnesses" and, on the more pedestrian side, "cover the mouth when yawning and sneezing."

The al-Naba newsletter has covered the coronavirus outbreak since its inception, previously calling it divine punishment for China's treatment of Uyghur muslims and relishing in the panic it expected the disease to cause throughout the west

President Donald Trump announced travel bans from Europe to the US last Wednesday, which went into effect midnight Friday. They do not apply to the UK. Trump's address came after the World Health Organization officially declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. The WHO had been reluctant to call the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic in an attempt to prevent panic and suggested containment measures were helping control the spread, but experts suggested the conditions were met in late February as case numbers in Italy, South Korea and Iran began to rapidly climb.

Italy is the epicenter of the outbreak in Europe. Italian health officials reported two single-day records on Sunday: 3,590 more cases and 368 deaths. Total cases in the country total more than 24,000, with deaths at more than 1,800. That's the most outside China. Meanwhile, as cases in Germany reached 5,000, the country announced that it will temporary close its borders with France, Switzerland, Austria Luxembourg and Denmark starting 8 a.m. local time on Monday.