Iran govt rapped for ‘covering up’ Corona cases, spreading disease | THE DAILY TRIBUNE | KINGDOM OF BAHRAIN

Iran govt rapped for ‘covering up’ Corona cases, spreading disease

TDT | Manama

Iran’s covering up of the real number of cases of coronavirus in the country has contributed to the spread of the disease regionally, a Bahraini analyst group said yesterday.

Iran’s assertion that it only has less than a 100 cases of coronavirus is misleading and gave pilgrims and visitors from the region a false sense of security, according to Bahraini analyst group Citizens For Bahrain. “The excessive secrecy and deliberate hiding of data from international health officials has allowed rates of infection to spiral out of control,” the group stated.

“Iran’s Health Ministry on 24 February claimed that the total number of infections was 61, with 12 deaths. However, a Qom deputy asserted that the death toll was at least 50. “Experts point out that such a death toll in reality probably means that thousands of people are already affected; hence the numbers of foreign pilgrims returning from Qom to their home countries and spreading the disease further afield. “There are reportedly also growing numbers of cases in other cities across Iran, suggesting that the disease is already way out of control,” it stated.

Iran’s deputy health minister, Iraj Harirchi, who has spearheaded the country’s efforts to contain the coronavirus, has contracted the illness, the Health Ministry said on Tuesday, renewing concerns about the spread of the virus in the country. Iran is one of the five countries that Bahrain has placed a travel ban. All cases of coronavirus reported in the Kingdom involve individuals who have travelled to Iran. “One of the early reasons for the regime’s cover up was its unsuccessful desire to avoid a terrible turnout in the majlis elections.

In the event, most voters didn’t bother to vote in a historically low turnout. “However, this was less to do with Coronavirus and more because the Guardian Council had struck down thousands of non-extremist candidates, meaning that the reformist wing of the regime was annihilated in the vote,” Citizens For Bahrain stated. 

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