A combo image released by the army showing military specialised units in protective gear sterilising the Egyptian parliament in Cairo. Image Credit: d

Cairo: A leading Egyptian officer died from the coronavirus as the army is engaged in a high-profile sterilisation campaign against the highly contagious coronavirus, state media reported Monday.

The army mourned the death of Maj.Gen. Khaled Shaltut who died Sunday after having contracted the virus during “his participation in acts combating the spread of the disease in the country,” the state Middle East News Agency said without further details.

The army units have carried out sterilisation and disinfection operations in Egypt’s public squares, streets and vital buildings as part of state efforts to contain the spread of the virus.

Egypt reported 39 new coronavirus cases and five new deaths on Monday.

It now has a total of 19 deaths due to COVID-19 and 366 infection cases.

The Egyptian government has taken a series of precautionary steps including the closure of educational institutions, mosques and churches, as well as a partial shutdown of coffee shops, restaurants and shopping centres, and a halt to flights to the country.