Information tallied by the Iranian Resistance movement indicates nearly 80,000 people have lost their lives to the COVID-19 pandemic in Iran. Parallel with downplaying the pandemic, and forcing people back to work, the regime’s president Hassan Rouhani now speaks of holding the religious “Ashura” ceremonies amid the pandemic.
Despite the growing number of deaths on a daily basis, even according to the regime’s own engineered statistics, Rouhani calls for holding Ashura ceremonies and mourning processions for Shi’ite Islam’s third Imam, Hossain-ibn-Ali?
Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), said: The decision by Khamenei and Rouhani to hold the mourning ceremonies during the month of Moharram and the deliberate sending of people to their death is the continuation of the strategy of mass human casualties as a barrier against the danger of the uprising and the regime’s overthrow.
Taking maximum risk, #Iran nurses have been working for 6 months, contracting the virus group after group. The health system is in dire need of new healthcare workers. The regime’s refusal to hire new nurses is another part of their strategy of mass human casualties. #COVIDー19
— Maryam Rajavi (@Maryam_Rajavi) July 27, 2020
This is while the Hajj pilgrimage has been suspended for the first time to save the lives of Muslims. Destroying the country’s health care system by refusing to hire nurses who are ready to serve is another part of the regime’s strategy. This is particularly the case because the nurses who have made enormous sacrifices for the past six months and are being infected in groups, urgently need reinforcement.
The regime mainly seeks to have larger mass casualties to control the restive Iranian society. In addition, and similar to reopening religious sites, the regime intends to hold Ashura ceremonies because it has been using the Iranian people’s religious sentiments to further plunder the public and to show it has some legitimacy and boost the morale of its forces.
Yet, the current state of Iranian society with growing public hatred toward the regime is being demonstrated in one way or another, such as the unprecedented boycott of the regime’s sham parliamentary elections in February and daily protests across the country.
Steps taken by the regime since the arrival of novel coronavirus in Iran in mid-February suggest the mullahs are using the pandemic as a tool to control the restive Iranian society.
The regime first denied the existence of virus in Iran. The Revolutionary Guards continued their flights to and from China, while other countries had canceled their flight to China, since the country was the epicenter of this virus. Opting for a larger turnout during its sham parliamentary elections, the mullahs’ regime concealed the fact that several people have been infected and lost their lost lives due to the coronavirus. The election met a general boycott, but those few supporters of the regime that participated in this election became hosts of the virus and spread it across Iran. The subsequent downplaying of the crisis, when the regime’s forces admitted to the virus’ existence, rapidly ending a premature quarantine, suggested the regime had no intention of combatting COVID-19.
The Iranian regime forced people back to work because more of them were adding to the army of starving people, in a quarantine that was not accompanied by governmental support unlike other countries. The explosive Iranian society once erupted in the November nationwide Iran protests and shook the regime’s foundations. The regime is not willing to have the same bitter experience again which could lead to its downfall.
Rouhani’s remarks about sending people back to work speaks for itself: “The simplest way is to shut down activities. The next day people will be protesting due to starvation, pressure, and problems.”
Rouhani has recently pointed to the extent of this crisis, thus showing how deep the crisis is. “To this day 25 million Iranians have contracted the novel coronavirus, and we need to assume 30 to 35 million are in danger of being infected by this virus. Over 200,000 persons were hospitalized. The number of people hospitalized in the future will be around twice the number we have witnessed in the past 150 days,” he said recently, quoting a report published by the regime’s Health Ministry.
Now in such a situation, the international community must intervene to prevent a major humanitarian catastrophe.
The state-run Mostahgel daily wrote recently: “This nation will not forget how it was abandoned during these bitter days. This will affect the upcoming incidents. Because soon, people will come to their table for eating, and their despair of an empty table will lead them to protest on busy streets. Then these wounded and deprived people will have nothing else left to lose. When their anger erupts, it will fight until the [regime’s] destruction, and you would see what you do not want to see.”