By Cyrus Yaqubi
While the Iranian people are very upset and angry about the slow process of vaccination against the Covid-19 virus and blame the entire regime for this situation, the fifth wave with the mutated strain of this virus known as Delta-variant has caused a sharp increase in the death toll in different cities of Iran.
Many cities have gone back to alarming red and even black coded colours. According to reliable statistics, the number of deaths from this disease in Iran has reached nearly 325,000. This was also acknowledged by one of the officials of the ruling system named Mohammad Reza Mahboobfar.
However, the government has never released the actual figures for fear of public reaction. The official figures announced by the Iranian Ministry of Health are less than a quarter of the exact number of casualties.
The rapid spread of the virus and the severe lack of vaccines are forcing those who can afford the cost, to travel to neighbouring countries such as Turkey, Armenia, or the southern countries of the Persian Gulf. Because the people have long given up on their hope for the government’s hollow promises on the production of domestic vaccines and widespread vaccinations.
Currently, only about 6 million people in Iran have been vaccinated (mostly only one dose), which is about 7% of Iran’s population of 85 million. Compared to other countries, Iran ranks 126th, even lower than poor countries such as Zimbabwe, Honduras and Pakistan.
Meanwhile, what has made people even more frustrated these days is the continuous electricity and water outages in most parts of Iran. In addition to causing the death of many hospitalized patients due to failure of the ventilators hooked up to patients for breathing, this has made life very difficult and unbearable for ordinary people
Because in the scorching heat of summer in Iran, which in some areas reaches temperatures above 50 degrees Celsius, life without water and electricity is practically unbearable. That is why these days, we have witnessed widespread protests by the people in different cities across Iran.
These protests have been carried out by different strata of society. Such as businessmen who have suffered a lot of damage to their businesses due to power outages, or farmers who have lost their crops due to lack of water for irrigation, as well as ordinary people in some cities who even have difficulty in procuring drinking water.
Even large factories and industries, such as steel manufacturing plants, have claimed millions of dollars in damages due to long-term power outages.
In such an atmosphere, the people, who had previously expressed their dissatisfaction with the ruling regime with the widespread boycott of the presidential election in late June, are expressing their dismay and anger in various ways and are raging against the institutionalized corruption of the government.
Social networks are full of people’s complaints about the current situation and the curses of the regime officials.
There are also reports on social media about the annual gathering of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI), the mullahs’ main and most organized opposition. In their annual meeting on July the 10th, they will have a network of 50,000 simultaneous online connections from more than 110 countries worldwide with the participation of more than 1,000 important international personalities and politicians.
By holding this international gathering, they are signalling the Iranian people to get rid of the current Coronavirus disaster and electricity and water outages, the regime should be changed.
For this reason, Khamenei and other mullahs are very upset and angry about holding this gathering, and they will try to prevent it from being held in any possible way. Last year, they attempted to disrupt the gathering with widespread cyber-attacks. And in 2018, when the gathering was held in person in Paris, the Iranian regime tried to plant a powerful explosive in the meeting masterminded by its diplomat in Austria, Assadollah Asadi. If successful, the explosions would have killed and wounded thousands of the participants. The plot was foiled, and Assadolah Asadi and his accomplices were arrested. Despite all the Iranian regime’s efforts, Asadi was sentenced to 20 years in prison in a Belgian court.
It remains to be seen with the appointment of Raessi as new president this year, what will the Iranian regime do against this gathering?