TEHRAN (FNA)- Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei on Saturday called on the government officials to take new initiatives to slow down the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.
The Supreme Leader made the remarks in a meeting with the members of the National Taskforce for Fighting Coronavirus on Saturday which was held at Imam Khomeini Husseiniyeh of Tehran with all health protocols in place.
Ayatollah Khamenei lauded the performance of the taskforce, and stressed the need to take decisive and governing decisions, persuade public opinion, and the cooperation of all institutions and individuals to deal with the COVID-19.
Referring to measures taken in different countries to deal with the coronavirus, the Supreme Leader said, “In some countries, such as the United States, the worst management has been applied in this regard, but we should try to overcome this incident, which is related to the lives and health of the people and their security and economy, with the best management.”
He called the need for proper management “decisive governance decisions, persuasion of public opinion and cooperation of all institutions, as well as the cooperation of the people.
“Of course, this cooperation is not limited to the confrontation with the coronavirus, but must exist in all issues, specially political issues, because the country, which has a strong nation, a new system, and a new discourse, naturally faces important issues in the global and domestic arenas,” the Supreme Leader said.
During the session, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani presented a report on the measures taken by the National Task Force for Fighting Coronavirus, as well as the future plans of the task force.
The Iranian health ministry announced on Saturday that 5,814 new cases of coronavirus infection have been reported across the country during the past 24 hours, adding that 335 patients have passed away in the same period of time.
“5,814 new patients infected with COVID-19 have been identified in the country based on confirmed diagnosis criteria during the past 24 hours,” Iranian Health Ministry Spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said on Saturday, and added, “2,169 patients have been hospitalized during the same time span.”
She added that the total number of COVID-19 patients has increased to 562,705.
“Unfortunately, 335 patients have lost their lives in the past 24 hours, increasing the number of the dead to 32,320,” the spokeswoman noted.
Lari expressed satisfaction that 450,891 coronavirus patients have recovered or been discharged from hospitals so far.
The spokeswoman further said that 4,952 cases infected with COVID-19 are in critical conditions.
She went on to say that 4,689,118 coronavirus diagnosis tests have so far been conducted across the country.
Lari warned that 31 provinces are still in red condition or the status of alert.
Early in August, President Rouhani lauded Iranians for observing coronavirus-related instructions set by the health ministry, and urged obligatory protocols will persist until discovering the vaccine.
Everybody should follow the instructions announced by the National Anti-Coronavirus Campaign Headquarters so that we overcome the virus and the related vaccine is made, Rouhani noted.
Those provinces which had already been in red conditions passed the coronavirus peak today, President Rouhani said.
He appreciated the nation for cooperating with the health officials in fighting the COVID-19.
Rouhani said in June that over 1,000 medical centers in the country received necessary equipment to conduct tests on people suspected of infection to coronavirus, and added that Iran ranks first in the Muslim world in scientific achievements.
“Based on a report [by the health ministry], 1,200 centers across the country are ready to take samples and tests from people and 17,500 nursing and health homes are also prepared to provide hygiene and treatment services to people,” Rouhani said, addressing a meeting of the national coronavirus campaign headquarters in Tehran.
Also, in August, he said that 1,500 hospital beds for special cases have also been added to the capacity of the country’s medical system since the outbreak of coronavirus in the country, noting that 2 drug production lines are also added every month to the country’s pharmaceutical capacity.
The coronavirus COVID-19 is affecting approximately all countries and territories around the world. The virus was first reported in the central Chinese city of Wuhan late last year. It has so far killed more than 1.15 million people and infected over 42.5 million others globally.
The Iranian foreign ministry declared that despite Washington’s claims of cooperation to transfer drugs to Iran via the new Swiss-launched payment mechanism, the US is troubling the process amid the coronavirus outbreak in the country.
Although US claims that medicines and medical equipment are not under sanctions, they have practically blocked the transfer of Iran’s financial resources in other countries into the Swiss Humanitarian Trade Arrangement (SHTA), former Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyed Abbas Mousavi said.
As the death toll from the virus surges, Iran intensifies its preventive safety measures. Closures of schools and most universities have been extended until further notice.
Rouhani on September 12 blasted the US administration for blocking the country’s efforts to receive loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to fight against coronavirus, saying that the American officials have forgotten humanity.
“We demanded the IMF for $5bln to assist us during the coronavirus outbreak for vaccine and medicine; all parties have voiced their agreement, but the US does not allow us to take the loan. They have distanced themselves from humanity to such an extent,” Rouhani said.
He added that even the friendly states whose banks are holding Iran’s money have been pressured by the US not to provide the country with access to its assets.
“History has not witnessed such a crime, as you may not find any other country that cannot withdraw money from foreign banks to purchase and import medicine for its people,” Rouhani said.
He, meantime, said that the Americans are angry with the Iranian government’s appropriate management of the coronavirus outbreak despite the harshest-ever sanctions imposed on the country.