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Iran Covid-19 Crisis: State Media Call for Khamenei’s Accountability


Iran is now experiencing one of its worst humanitarian crises in the past forty years. The country is plagued with the Covid-19. According to the Iranian opposition, at least 2,000 people lost their lives due to the novel coronavirus on Tuesday, bringing deaths to 368,400. The regime could have prevented the current crisis if the regime’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, had not banned the Covid-19 vaccines in January 2021.  

The situation has reached a point where the regime state media acknowledge the regime’s inaction, vaccination scam and warn about social backlash. In recent days the regime officials have confirmed they are about to purchase 30 million doses of vaccine. Yet, the state media have described this action as a desperate attempt to control society’s anger.  

“Officials suffer from ‘delayed understanding’ of the situation. This has institutionalized delayed crisis management in our governing system. In other words, as long as the situation does not reach a critical point and wouldn’t cause social dissent and protests, the officials would not act,” wrote the state-run Jomleh daily on August 16.  

Jomleh underlined that the regime’s actions serve as propaganda, and added that “thanks to the social media, officials post their images while ‘helping people and going to the heart of problems. But they refuse to underline that they are in fact unable to resolve the crisis.” 

“When the problem was not this much critical, and we had the opportunity to purchase Covid-19 vaccines from COVAX and vaccinate the population, we implemented our own method, boycotted the world. We entered a path that was unknown for the entire world, and now when the situation became complicated, we changed our path,” Jomleh adds.  

A look back at the contradictory remarks made by Ali Khamenei and Hassan Rouhani over Covid19

Khamenei banned Covid-19 vaccines, so he could use the deadly virus to control the restive society. He had called the coronavirus a “test” and “blessing” and used the virus as an ally to quell society. Some of the regime’s officials blatantly claimed the foreign powers intend to spy on Iranians using the Covid-19 vaccines.  

Besides, Khamenei persisted in the production of the so-called “domestic vaccine” to further plunder people. His Execution of Imam Khomeini’s Order (EIKO) financial institution was behind producing these vaccines. Thus, it received millions of dollars of funding to produce the vaccines.  

“The Food and Drug Administration is under heavy pressure to approve domestically produced vaccines and anti-coronavirus medicines. Because obtaining approval from the Ministry of Health means a huge profit for the drug owner,” wrote the state-run Jahan-e Sanat on December 14. In other words, Khamenei played with Iranian people’s lives to prolong his regime’s life and assets. 

“Permission to import Pfizer and Moderna vaccines has been issued from authorized sources. According to Mohammad Reza Shanesaz, the head of the Food and Drug Administration. The news, of course, after more than a year of delay and the immersion of Iran in the violent waves Covid-19, which some refer to as the apocalyptic massacre, raises the question more than ever that why officials did not procure vaccines earlier?” Arman daily wrote on August 17. 

“If importing Pfizer and Moderna was supposed to be resolved by issuing a license from what is called authorized sources, why do you say so now that you are desperate to manage this catastrophe in the face of people who are desperate to continue their lives?” Arman daily added. 

Arman added that “No one has forgotten all the weird talk about these vaccines. Even someone who said that spy devices might be in these vaccines. No one will forget the letter of 2,500 doctors to the government, mentioning the names of these two vaccines,  and writing that these vaccines are unreliable and the way they somehow wanted to prevent their import.” 

“The whole concern of those 2,500 people, including the new Minister of Health, was that the government, before importing the vaccines, pay attention to their brands, and reject Pfizer and Moderna, approved by the World Health Organization,” Arman adds. 

The real concern of those so-called doctors and Khamenei was to preserve the regime while using the virus and its mass casualties to prevent another uprising. 

Ali Khamenei bans the import of coronavirus vaccine to Iran

According to Arman daily, “based on the rule of causation, if a person or persons are not directly involved in a crime or damage but have provided the grounds and conditions for the occurrence of a crime and damage, they are responsible and subject to accountability.” “Those who caused the lack of access to the vaccine and the death of compatriots due to coronavirus infection should be held accountable according to this law.” 

Videos on social media show how Iranians call for Khamenei’s prosecution for depriving people of the “right of life,” as described by Amnesty International in January when he banned Covid-19 vaccines. 

If the situation continues, the regime certainly faces protests by people from all walks of life. The state media have reflected the regime’s fear in this regard in recent days. 

“This situation has gradually put society at risk of depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and social anger. The [current crises] do not heal and leave long-term effects. Today, if we do not think of a solution for the near future, we will pay huge costs for it,” Atab-e Yazd daily warned on August 17.