Analyzing by PMOI/MEK
Iran, March 5, 2021—Since the beginning of 2021, governments across the globe have accelerated their efforts to vaccinate their citizens against Covid-19. Drug companies are doing their best to enhance the efficiency of Covid-19 vaccines. These attempts have revived hopes for ending this ominous illness despite the virus having mutated in recent months.
In this context, on February 28, the Statista website provided statistics about vaccination progress in several countries. These figures show the governments’ efforts for sparing their people’s lives in front of the deadly disease.
Bahrain: 300,000 people have been vaccinated – Population: 1.5 million
Turkey: 8.675 million people have been vaccinated – Population: 84 million
Kuwait: 193,000 people have been vaccinated – Population: 5 million
Qatar: 96,000 people have been vaccinated – Population: 2.6 million
Serbia: 1.756 million people have been vaccinated – Population: 8.74 million
Morocco: 3.747 million people have been vaccinated – Population: 37 million
However, the Iranian regime is dealing with the coronavirus crisis with indifference and refuses to procure reliable vaccines due to political considerations.
Furthermore, the mutated strains of the virus claim more lives each day and have swept across all of Iran’s 31 provinces. Health officials describe the situation as tense.
On March 1, Alireza Zali, the head of the Tehran Covid-19 Task Force, said that “the coronavirus’s new wave is inflaming.”
Earlier, on February 20, Alireza Raisi, the spokesperson of the National Covid-19 Task Force, had said, “The pace of virus spread is very high.”
In such circumstances, even official and semiofficial media are criticizing the government’s mismanagement of the vaccination process. On March 3, Arman daily criticized officials’ claims about inefficiency of Covid-19 vaccines to downplay their inaction for procuring vaccines. “In such circumstances, evidence shows that global vaccination was effective despite mutated strains of the virus,” Arman wrote.
The daily also reflected public ire against the government’s refusal to save the people. “Currently, we witness the Broadcasting Organization (IRIB) is making strange programs, rejecting productions of vaccine-making companies like Pfizer and Moderna. Oddly, in its reports, the IRIB tries to introduce these vaccines harmful and aimless,” Arman added.
On the other hand, the regime cannot hide the truth about the efficiency of approved vaccines. “The greatest vaccination campaign in history is taking place across the globe. As of now, 225 million doses of approved Covid-19 vaccines have been injected in 100 countries,” wrote the semiofficial ISNA news agency on February 26.
This global stream has exaggerated public demand for vaccination and sounded alarms about the social implications of not taking action. “The Iranian people don’t have access to vaccines while the war-torn country of Afghanistan has imported 500,000 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine. Where are we in this equation?” wrote Mostaghel daily on March 2.
The Government’s Maneuvers and Lies
Furthermore, in addition to regime supreme leader Ali Khamenei’s decree banning the purchase of Covid-19 vaccines from the US, the UK, and France, president Hassan Rouhani and top officials evade public vaccination under various pretenses.
“Terrifying and blaming people for not abiding by protocols are the sole method our officials practice to counter the coronavirus. In the past year, there was nothing in officials’ words and remarks but contradictory claims,” wrote Arman on March 3.
On the other hand, Khamenei and his regime fulfill different tricks to escape social hatred for non-vaccination. “The side-effects of the vaccines are not truly clear for us, and which vaccine is more effective and until when they are effective,” said Rouhani on February 27. He also claimed, “Some people across the globe are even afraid of injecting the vaccine” while different countries offer public vaccination for free.
Officials once bragged about vaccinating 50,000 people with the domestic vaccine. However, they have seemingly received Cuban vaccines, which were supposed to pass their “third stage of the human experiment in Iran,” according to the Persian-language edition of Deutsche Welle on January 9.
However, the question is, have these 50,000 people been informed that they are subjected to the human experiment? If they had not been informed, this vaccination is considered as a crime against humanity and international organizations should investigate it.
These contradictory remarks and secrecy prompted government-backed media to question, ‘How is it possible to trust the Health Minister’s remarks?’ “The minister who once claims that he has become the director of the morgue but a week later, he says, ‘The world has been surprised by the management and control of the coronavirus in our country,” wrote Arman.
Iranian Officials Fears Covid-19 Vaccine More Than the Virus
Undeniable facts show that there is no legal, technical, or financial barrier to purchase and procure reliable Covid-19 vaccines. Previously, Iranian officials were blaming the U.S. for sanctions, claiming, “U.S. sanctions have hampered Iran from purchasing vaccines.”
However, both the U.S. and COVAX rejected Tehran’s excuses, announcing, “There are no barrier for Iran to procure Covid-19 vaccines.” Notably, in February 2020, former Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Abbas Mousavi bluntly said, “Food and medicine were never sanctioned.”
In reality, the Iranian regime exploited the health crisis as a barrier against growing public grievances. Before the Covid-19 outbreak began in Iran, the regime had been placed in an awkward situation with ongoing protests and dissidents’ anti-establishment activities.
Meanwhile, crippling sanctions and international isolation had pushed the ruling system on the verge of collapse. But the coronavirus enabled Khamenei and Rouhani to divert public opinion. On March 4, 2020, during Arbor day ceremony in Iran, Khamenei frankly described the deadly virus as a ‘blessing,’ which may bring unprecedented opportunities for the ‘state.’
This secrecy and contradictory claims prove the regime tried to benefited from the virus. “Officials’ behaviors seem that they missed the increase in coronavirus death toll and new cases, and cannot tolerate a decrease in Covid-19 patients,” wrote Hamdeli daily on March 2.