Analysis by PMOI/MEK
Iran, November 25, 2020—Despite the Iranian regime’s so-called “severe restrictions” plan or “smart lockdown” imposed on hundreds of cities, Alireza Zali, the head of the Coronavirus Task Force in Tehran, announced that the required and desired rhythm in controlling the pandemic has not yet been achieved.
State-run television quoted Zali as saying: “The conditions of the province and city of Tehran are critical, and the situation is not what would be expected of the coronavirus-riddled city. City traffic data and scenes show that the proper and required rhythm to control the epidemic in the city has not been achieved yet.”
A look at Tehran gives us a picture of the entire country and the 400 cities and counties that have been subjected to the plan. Zali is not the only official who is voicing concern over the government’s approach. Hojjat Nazari, a member of Tehran’s City Council said, “Since yesterday, it was instructed to shut down the capital. But in practice, there have been no closures, and yesterday I witnessed that the streets were filled with crowds. This also shows that the government had no intention to shut down the city. On the surface, the government wants to close down the city, but in reality, almost all businesses continue. This will not prevent the spread of the coronavirus.”
The statistics also show a growing trend in Covid-19 infections and casualties. According to Zali, even if the plan goes well, its effects will only show themselves in the statistics in three months’ time.
A new catastrophe in sight
But the real question is whether we will eventually witness a decline in Iran’s coronavirus stats in a few months? According to a member of Tehran’s city council, by calling the plan a “smart shutdown” eventually all jobs, streets, metro, busses, etc. will continue to host crowds. This means that the coronavirus infections and mortality rates will continue to rise.
After announcing the situation is as “not expected” Zali also reminded that the plan needs time should not be judged too soon. But what are the prospects?
Clearly, given the regime’s approach, the future is grim. Any country that wants to impose quarantines or partial shutdowns must provide financial support for people, so stay at home without being worried about providing for their families.
What have the mullahs done so far?
Previously Iranian regime president Hassan Rouhani announced that 30 million people have been provided with 1 million rials every month for four months and 10 million families were granted 10-million-rial loans. But given the depreciation of the rial and the skyrocketing prices of basic goods, this amount of money is not sufficient.
Naturally, in these circumstances, people are forced to work, and this is exactly what the regime wants. The regime is just forced to accept the so-called “smart shutdown” because of the immense pressure of the catastrophe.
As the regime supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and Rouhani are not willing to use their billions of dollars in assets to support the people and the economy, there is no sight of controlling the disaster. This will also lead to a wave of public outrage and anger. Something that Khamenei and Rouhani very much fear.