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Iran coronavirus update: Over 43,800 deaths, up to 8.5 million cases

The novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, has taken the lives of over 43,800 people throughout Iran, according to the Iranian opposition PMOI/MEK
The novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, has taken the lives of over 43,800 people throughout Iran, according to the Iranian opposition PMOI/MEK

Reporting by PMOI/MEK

Iran, May 23, 2020—Over 43,800 people have died of the novel coronavirus in 320 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, May 23. The official death count declared by the regime is 7,359, less than a sixth of the actual figure.

The death toll in various provinces include: 3,270 in Khuzestan, 3,085 in Razavi Khorasan, 1,315 in Lorestan, 1,050 in Fars, 826 in Kurdistan, 538 in Kerman, and 505 in Qazvin. This is in addition to reports obtained from other provinces.

Over 43,800 dead of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Iran-Iran Coronavirus Death Toll per PMOI/MEK sources

Over 43,800 dead of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Iran-Iran Coronavirus Death Toll per PMOI/MEK sources

 

While the regime’s Health Ministry is emphasizing there are no “white” provinces and most provincial capitals are considered red areas, the mullahs’ President Hassan Rouhani continued his lies and misleading remarks today.

“All government employees will be returning to work from May 30 and the percentage that we had previously ordered to work for a lesser number of hours will see these restrictions lifted,” Rouhani said. “Based on the latest Health Ministry instructions, all sacred and religious sites will be reopened a day after Eid al-Fitr (Monday).”

Rouhani was also quite angry over revelations about the coronavirus crisis in Iran. “There are some people in the country that seek to install fear about the COVID-19 virus, and we should not accept this,” he said.

 

However, Iranian regime Health Minister Saeid Namaki said on Saturday, “We are witnessing new escalations of this illness in warmer climate provinces… The status quo is not good in Khuzestan Province (southwest Iran bordering southern Iraq) … We have had discussions with the governors of Khuzestan’s neighboring provinces, including Chaharmahal & Bakhtiari and Kohgiluyeh & Boyer Ahmed, and we have issued warnings about a new spread of the illness… There have been cases in Sistan & Baluchistan Province (southeast Iran), in the village of Najafabad near the city of Khash, and this sounded an alarm bell for us,” he said on Saturday, May 23, according to the state-run Hamshahri daily.

Khuzestan Province remains a red area,” said Health Ministry spokesperson Kianush Jahanpour on Saturday. “The number of cases is far higher than one percent of the entire population… More scientific testing is needed… In Iran, such studies have yet to be conducted. However, as the Health Minister said, the number of cases in our society has yet to reach the ten-percent mark,” Jahanpour added, according to the state-run Moj daily.

Therefore, according to the regime’s own health ministry, the number of coronavirus cases is between 850,000 and 8.5 million. This is while the health ministry’s spokesperson stipulated today that the number of coronavirus patients is 133,521. This means that the engineered statistics offered by the regime are 6.5-65 times smaller than the reality, a reality that the regime is fighting hard to conceal.

The governor of Lorestan province said, “Every day, we see an increase in the number of cases in some counties… Currently, we’re not receiving good reports from Borujerd and Delfan. The number of coronavirus cases in these two counties is high.” (Source: Mehr News Agency, May 23)

On Saturday, the official IRNA news agency quoted the president of Bushehr Medical Sciences University as saying, “When the number of COVID-19-positive people increases, there’s a possibility that the number of hospitalized people increases next week, and this doesn’t send a good message. In the three months that pass from the spread of coronavirus in this province, 7,000 people have referred to the hospital for acute respiratory illness.” The vice president of this university said, “Contrary to the past where only 4-5 percent of the tests were declared positive, today, more than 50 percent of tests are positive, and this shows a growing trend of illness in Bushehr province.”

IRNA added, “By the end of Farvardin (mid-April), the number of coronavirus patients was less than 100, but after the implementation of the ‘smart distancing’ plan and the lifting of restrictions… 20-79 positive cases are added every day.”

Arman, another state-run newspaper, warned about the threat of social upheavals, writing, “Social, economic, and political changes after the dangerous coronavirus epidemic will definitely affect us… We have a very limited window.”

Iran coronavirus outbreak death toll interactive map