Reporting by PMOI/MEK
Iran, March 18, 2020—On Monday, Iranian regime president Hassan Rouhani claimed that Iran had passed the peak point of the coronavirus outbreak, which has so far killed at least 5,900 people.
“I hope what we have spoken in this meeting can explain that we have passed by the peak of this virus and whenever Dr. Namaki finds it necessary he can explain in for our people which will be very promising,” Iran’s state-run television quoted Rouhani on March 16.
Rouhani’s claim was so ridiculous that it caused a tumult among the regime’s own officials and media.
Following Rouhani’s false claims, Hesameddin Ashna, an intelligence agent and an advisor to Rouhani, claimed that “his words have been distorted by the media.”
“Iran has absolutely not passed through the coronavirus peak,” IRNA news agency, which is controlled by Rouhani’s faction, quoted Ashna, who is also the Head of the Presidential Center for Strategic Research.
IRNA continued: “It is clear that if the President of Iran officially wanted to announce that the country has passed through the coronavirus peak, he would say it more clearly and in detail instead of making a passing reference in a short sentence and mentioning efforts to cross the peak of the disease in the future.”
In another acknowledgment of the regime’s dismal handling of the situation, Saied Hajjarian, one of the pioneers of the so-called reformist movement, said, “Coronavirus has demolished the power structure. This virus has raised questions about the defective power structure of the country, has given a new image of irresponsibility and bureaucratic chaos and unfortunately has resuscitated tribalism.”
“We must hold the Mahan Airways accountable for putting the people’s lives in danger for its own financial benefits. But we must also hold the radio and television for calling the coronavirus a rumor one day before the elections,” said MP, Parvabeh Salahshouri, a clear reference to the regime’s cover-up of the situation for the sake of encouraging a high voter turnout in its sham parliamentary elections.
Zohreh Elahian, another MP who has contracted coronavirus, said: “Rouhani’s present relating this issue was very weak and he and his first vice president must be present.” According to reports, more than 20 MPs have so far contracted COVID-19, and several have died.
Behrouz Nemati, a member of the board of directors of the Majlis (parliament) said, “Not quarantining Qom and normalizing the conditions was the cause of the fast spread of the virus to various cities. The crisis of coronavirus has spread all over the country and daily, thousands of people are getting infected. The approximate statistics are very heavy and some officials still don’t get it that we are in a critical situation.”
Despite calls by medical experts to impose quarantine the epicenters of the virus and shut down religious sites, the regime refrained from taking such measures as other states have done. As a result, the virus has now spread to all 31 provinces of the country and is claiming more lives every day.
On Monday, Dr. Rick Brennan, the World Health Organization emergency director for the Middle East, told Reuters the number of cases reported could represent only about a fifth of the real numbers. Tehran’s official numbers at the time were 988 COVID-19 deaths. Considering Dr. Brennan’s remarks, the death toll should be considered somewhere around 4,900.