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EDITORIAL: Coronavirus: Iran’s Regime Takes People Hostage to Force an End to Sanctions

Since the coronavirus outbreak, the Iranian regime’s cover-up, lying and inaction has caused the disease to spread rapidly throughout Iran, and more than 11,000 Iranians to this day have lost their lives because of the virus.  Despite having huge financial and logistical resources, the Iranian regime does not take any serious measures to help Iranians diagnosed with the coronavirus.  

As more Iranians die on daily basis, the mullahs’ regime has taken Iranian people hostage in pursuit of its policies, specifically an end or suspension to sanctions, rather than taking any action to help the people. The regime’s lobby in the west, supporters of the appeasement policy and those who look to the Iranian market for their commercial interests are shedding crocodile tears in an orchestrated act for the Iranian people in order to conceal their primary goal of helping the regime survive. 

These people are getting their talking points from the regime. They claim, “If we do not help Iran, Iran will become the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak and this is catastrophe for the whole world.” This is a great deception to help a regime that has been killing the Iranian people and today is the main cause of the spread of the coronavirus. 

Let’s review the facts: 

  •  The regime deliberately acknowledged the existence of the coronavirus in Iran with a three-week delay in order to hold its sham parliamentary elections and its events to mark the anniversary of its rise to power.  
  • The regime refused to quarantine the city of Qom, which was the center of the coronavirus outbreak in Iran because of its political and reactionary interests. 
  • The Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) airlines continued their flights for one month even after they were informed of the existence of COVID-19 in China.  
  • The regime’s Minister of Health acknowledged tens of millions of masks have been hoarded by a party (the IRGCand were sold at exorbitant prices. 
  • At the height of the spread of the coronavirus in Iran, Ali Shamkhani, the Secretary of the regime’s Supreme National Security Council donated 50,000 masks to the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) 
  • In January, despite claiming it has financial difficulties because of the sanctions, the regime paid $200 million dollars to the IRGC’s Quds Force for its operations abroad.  
  • The capital of the Execution of Imam Khomeini’s Order 
  • (EIKO), according to a Reuters investigative report, is worth $95 billion and the regime’s supreme leader, Ali Khamenei’s office, according to the U.S. state department has a capital of $200 million, but the regime is unwilling to spend it for people.  
  • There are more than a dozen other Khamenei-controlled entities in Iran that have hundreds of millions of dollars in capital. 
  • The regime rejected the US aid offer. 
  • The regime prevented Doctors Without Borders from constructing a hospital in Iran, and the regime’s president Hassan Rouhani declared that “our hospitals are empty, and we don’t have any sort of shortages.” 
  • The United States has officially announced sending medical equipment and medications to Iran are not affected by sanctions.  

And the list goes on. What the regime has said publicly is that we do not want help, we want the sanctions to be liftedThe regime plays a filthy game with the lives of Iran’s people. Khamenei, at the beginning of the new Persian year, declared the most important event of the past year, was not the coronavirus or its casualties, but the death of Qassem Soleimani, head of the Quds Force 

Apparently, the infection and death of thousands of Iranians by the coronavirus, the homelessness of thousands of them because of the earthquakes and floods and the brutal killing of 1500 people during the anti-government Iran protests in November weren’t the “peak of the incidents” in Iran. Yet, the life of one of the world’s most notorious criminals within the past five decades is a priority over the lives and resources of millions of Iranians.  

Khamenei’s response to the US offer of assistance indicated that for him, the political considerations were preferable to the lives of the people. He said there is no trust towards the Americans and Your drugs may even spread the disease further or make the virus permanent. (Khamenei’s remarks, the state-run Fars News agency, March 22, 2020.) 

The United States has repeatedly stated that sanctions have nothing to do with food and medicineSpecial Representative Brian Hook announced on March 22 that, “US sanctions are not preventing aid from getting to Iran. Yet, Khamenei, uses the coronavirus outbreak to play with the lives of the Iranian people, and he further talks of melancholy claim that “If you send a physician, you may want to closely test the toxic effects of the virus you have created. Because it’s said that given the knowledge about Iranian genes, part of the virus has been specially created for IranTherefore, your word is not acceptable.” 

As Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), said: Expelling Doctors Without Borders, who had come to Isfahan with prior agreement and coordination demonstrates that the mullahs intend to continue their criminal cover-up, especially about the number of fatalities. This shows that the main problem in Iran is the corrupt dictatorship that does not think about anything but how to preserve its grip on power and that human lives are worthless. The regime wants to receive aid without any supervision so that it can put it at the disposal of the IRGC and regime officials.

The regime and its supreme leader, Khamenei, are setting a record of cruelty and brutality amid the coronavirus outbreak in Iran, the victims of which are the Iranian people. 

The coronavirus and the suffering of the Iranian people are the means by which the regime seeks to have sanctions lifted so that it can carry out its terrorist intentions. 

 

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