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Iran: Covid vaccines for officials, death for the public

Iran's people are deprived of coronavirus vaccine
Iran's people are deprived of coronavirus vaccine

Analysis by PMOI/MEK

Iran, May 26, 2021—Iran’s coronavirus crisis continues to grow worse and the daily death toll is in the triple digits while in many other countries, daily cases and deaths continue to decline.

According to a May 19 report by the state-run Tasnim news agency, "A periodic comparison of the statistics in the past week shows that the mutated variant of the virus is still active. In some areas, the virus has risen to the point where there is concern that the current small flames of the disease all over the country will suddenly become a worrying crisis or cause the fifth peak throughout Iran.”

However, the regime has planned a very limited general vaccination policy, and this at a time when some countries are planning to inject the second dose of the vaccine.

In Iran, the vast majority of the people, and even most of the medical staff have not been vaccinated, and there is still no specific vaccination schedule.

The government of Hassan Rouhani has made public vaccination conditional on the production of domestic vaccines, and it is continuously delaying public vaccination.

However, regime officials have been vaccinated by the best vaccine, the one that Iranian regime supreme leader Ali Khamenei banned from entering the country and which is still being sold at exorbitant prices by government linked-dealers.

Khamenei banned the purchase of globally approved vaccines on January 6 and said: "American and British vaccines are not allowed in the country. I told the officials this before and I say it publicly now."

But Rouhani claimed: "I honestly say to the people that as the president of the country, I have not been vaccinated yet because it is not my turn."

"I do not know of any high-level official in this country who has used or wants to use the vaccine outside the framework of the vaccination plan. When some people ask me if I was vaccinated and I say no, they do not believe and laugh,” Rouhani said, according to the News Network, May 15.

Despite this Rouhani’s lies, former President Mahmood Ahmadinejad revealed that all officials had been vaccinated, but he did not disclose the type of vaccine and postponed it to the future.

According to a May 20 report in Ahamadinejad’s website, Dolate Bahar, the former regime president said, “The situation of Covid-19 is chaotic, and no clear decision is being made, because the officials have been vaccinated and they have no concerns. I will not tell what kind of vaccine they got.”

The Arman newspaper wrote on May 9, "People are asking themselves why only ordinary people are affected by the Covid virus. Why is there no news of the death of managers, even in the mid-level managers? This has increased the suspicion among the people that there are apparently people who have received the Covid vaccine. What is the difference between the country's leaders and ordinary people in contracting this virus? The question is whether the Covid-19 that managers and officials get is a different kind, which heals quickly, but 400 ordinary people lose their lives daily.”

Imported vaccines, which naturally must be delivered to the public by the Ministry of Health, are pouring into the black market, and government dealers are selling them to the people at exorbitant prices.

Kianoosh Jahanpour, spokesman for the Food and Drug Administration, falsely claimed that no Covid vaccine has leaked or exited from the Ministry of Health system into the black market, according to the Khabaronline daily, on May 18.

Meanwhile, Mohsen Dehnavi, a member of the regime’s Majlis (parliament), announced that 200,000 doses of the vaccine had been lost.

In an interview with Channel 3 TV, Dehnavi said on May 11: "I would like to talk about vaccine. I also wrote a letter to the Minister of Health. Some of the young people of this country, the best elite children of this country, have created a system for several years in the Ministry of Interior called TTAK, where every drug that is supposed to be imported in the country is registered in this system so that it reaches the consumer, and it prevents the drug from being smuggled and misused. The vaccine was supposed to be registered on a similar system. I received a report last week and saw that out of the 2 million vaccines that came, more than 200,000 doses of the vaccine were missing. So where did this vaccine go?”

Dehnavi further said, “Those vaccines are what comes out of the black market. When we go to Naser Khosrow (a street in Tehran where rare medicines are sold) vaccine are sold at 250 million rials (approx. $1,121) a shot.”

Iraj Haririchi, the regime's deputy minister of health, also acknowledged this, but tried to downplay it. "I apologize to our dear people for any problems that have occurred in the vaccination... It is not true to think that there was no violation and it was zero, but the violations occurred in the first few days," Harirchi said in an interview with the Channel 3 TV, broadcasted on May 17.

The regime has not only vaccinated its leaders but also its repressive forces. In this regard, Hossein Rahimi, the police chief of Greater Tehran, announced that the vaccination of State Security Forces in Greater Tehran has begun, according to a May 19 report by the Mehr news agency.

This way, it becomes clear that the mullahs are not only thinking about saving their lives against the Covid-19, but are also taking measures to protect themselves against potential protest.

Seven pro-government newspapers, Ettela'at, Hamshahri, Jomhouri, Donya-e-Eqtesad, Shargh, Etemad, Sazandegi and 7 Sobh, wrote in their editorial on May 17: “In the midst of the gripping crises of the country, behind the officials’ debates and in the circumstances that we are approaching the decisive and crucial days of the elections... We warn about the most important and vital issue of life these days; providing and distributing vaccines should be the first mission of all government entities."

However, the regime is delaying public vaccination to prevent assemblies and mass protests.

However, this brutal policy has caused divisions within the regime and its forces and is likely to result in popular protests and uprisings against its leaders, especially Khamenei.

This is a government that has not only withheld the vaccine from the people, but has stolen bread from their tables, and has forced the poor people to go to work in the midst of the Covid crisis, or wander the streets looking for work, or looking for food in garbage cans. And every day, it gives one more reason for the people to overthrow it.