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Iran coronavirus update: Over 35,300 dead, official says real figures 20 times higher than state stats

The novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, has taken the lives of over 35,400 people throughout Iran, according to the Iranian opposition PMOI/MEK
The novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, has taken the lives of over 35,400 people throughout Iran, according to the Iranian opposition PMOI/MEK

Reporting by PMOI/MEK   

Iran, April 25, 2020—Over 35,300 people have died of the novel coronavirus in 298 cities checkered across all of Iran’s 31 provinces, according to reports tallied by the Iranian opposition People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) as of Saturday afternoon local time, April 25. The official death count declared by the regime is 5,650, nearly a seventh of the actual figure.

The death toll in various provinces include: 3,140 in Qom, 2,250 in Mazandaran, 1,640 in Khuzestan, 1,225 in Alborz, 1,140 in West Azerbaijan, 805 in Lorestan, 710 in Sistan & Baluchistan, 640 in Ardabil, 630 in Semnan, 348 in Bushehr, and 230 in Kohgiluyeh & Boyer Ahmed. This is in addition to reports obtained from other provinces.

Over 35,300 dead of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Iran-Iran Coronavirus Death Toll per PMOI MEK sources

Over 35,300 dead of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Iran-Iran Coronavirus Death Toll per PMOI MEK sources

 

Despite the regime’s engineered numbers, state officials and experts are one after another voicing the false nature of these figures and expressing significant concerns regarding the decisions made to send people back to work.

“There is a rise in coronavirus cases and deaths witnessed in at least nine provinces, according to an official report issued by the COVID-19 Task Force HQ’s Epidemiology Committee. This recently published report, with numbers up to April 2, the provinces of Qom, Markarzi (Central), Ilam, Ardabil, Gilan, Golestan, Hamedan, Kohgiluyeh & Boyer Ahmed and Khuzestan are experiencing a rise in the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths,” according to the state-run Hamshahri website.

“The number of new patients in Tehran is on the rise. Unfortunately, the reopening of parks sent a wrong message to the people and they are thinking the situation has improved in Tehran. The expansion of this illness in Tehran has not reached a decreasing phase. Yesterday we had 247 new cases and hospitalizations in Tehran and 68 individuals were directly placed in the ICU sections,” said Alireza Zali, head of Tehran’s COVID-19 Task Force HQ, on Friday to the regime’s state-run TV.

“The possibility of a second wave in [Gilan] Province is felt more than ever before,” said Mohammad Hossein Ghorbani, representative of the Health Minister in Gilan Province, northern Iran. “From April 19 to this day, based on orders from the country’s COVID-19 Task Force HQ and the President, to have entrances to all provinces reopened was a strategic mistake for the general public… This has resulted in a peak of around 700 new cases on April 19 and 20… We are aware of the crisis… and the new volume of coronavirus cases has worn out our medical teams,” he said on Saturday, April 25, according to the state-run Setareh Sobh daily.

“Considering the fact that 74 percent of the population in Sistan & Baluchistan Province are living under the food security poverty line and do not have permanent jobs, most of them have daily jobs and earn their money on a daily basis,” said Alim Yar Mohammadi, member of the regime’s Majlis (parliament) from the city of Zahedan, on Saturday, April 25. “Following permissions from the government for people to return to their work and activities, the number of cases began to rise and this resulted in concerns for officials of the Medical Sciences University… if the government had thought of measures for people in Sistan & Baluchistan Province who don’t have permanent jobs, we would not be witnessing people being infected with coronavirus today,” he added, according to the regime’s Setareyeh Sobh daily.

The dean of Mashhad Medical Sciences University said, “I’m absolutely not saying that Razavi Khorasan province and the city of Mashhad are out of the red situation… The situation is red and we must expect a disaster. We must prepare for the worst.”

Meanwhile, Dr. Massoud Yunessian, a member of the scientific delegation of Tehran Medical Sciences University, said that the number of cases in Tehran is 20 times higher than the official stats. “The [official] stats are systematically lower than the ground truth… The applied tests don’t have a high sensitivity and only detect half the cases,” he said. “Also, tests have only been applied to half of the hospitalized patients. Only 20 percent of cases are hospitalized, only half of them have been tested, and only half of those tests turn out positive. Therefore, we can conclude that the real number of cases is 20 more than what is being reported.” (Source: Setareyeh Sobh, April 25)

Mohammad Reza Nikbakht, dean of Lorestan Medical Sciences University, said, “The Supreme National Security Council and the security department of the Health Ministry told us not to report… In this country, we receive orders from the higher authorities. We can only obey.” (Aflak TV, Lorestan province, April 22)

Regime officials continue to express fear of the possibility of uprisings among the impoverished classes of the society. The state-run Aftab-e Yazd daily wrote, “There’s fear that after the coronavirus outbreak, the social crisis that currently exists will deepen. How long can the government sustain the 10-million-rial (approx. $65) loan? The problem isn’t the distribution of money. The problem is that businesses have been damaged and the poor segments of the society are unemployed, the inflation is increasing and the recession that has been created can lead to a societal collapse. Sum this up with the recent unrests and look at the peak of this problem.”

Amid the coronavirus crisis, not only the regime is refraining from helping the people, but instead, it is raising the price of bread. According to state-run media, the price of bread in Khuzestan province has increased by 50 percent.

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), underlined that the regime has started a new wave of pressure on the people of Iran, who are suffering from the coronavirus and the virus of the mullahs.

Iran coronavirus outbreak death toll interactive map