Iranian women in Tehran, October 4, 2020 (Abedin Taherkenareh/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock)
UPDATE, APRIL 3:
Coronavirus cases continue to surge in Iran, as President Hassan Rouhani replaces his assurances with concern.
Daily cases rose on Friday to 11,660, closing on the all-time high of 14,051 on November 26. There were 117 deaths, the highest daily toll since 128 on December 31.
Rouhani told the National Coronavirus Task Force on Saturday, “Unfortunately, the fourth wave of the disease has started in two provinces in the country, and if we do not observe health protocols, this wave will enter other provinces as well.”
The President told the Task Force in last Saturday’s meeting, “I think the peak of this disease is over.”
ORIGINAL ENTRY, MARCH 31: Iran is facing another wave of the Coronavirus pandemic, as cases surge 40% in a week.
The Health Ministry reported 10,250 cases on Tuesday, compared to 7,290 on March 23.
The death rate has not surged yet, with 91 reported yesterday, but authorities fear an imminent spike, given the average two-week lag between cases and fatalities.
Iran has suffered 62,569 deaths in the pandemic. There have been more than 1.88 million confirmed cases.
After the initial wave of the pandemic last spring, Iran set records last autumn when containment measures were eased. Daily infections almost quadrupled to reach 14,051 on November 26, and deaths peaked at 483 on November 24.
The Rouhani Government had warned the public that celebrations for Iranian New Year, which began March 21, could break the containment of the virus. Officials have also expressed concern about dangerous variants spreading through the country.
But President Rouhani told the National Coronavirus Task Force on Saturday:
I think the peak of this disease is over despite all the different mutations of the virus. The peak of the coronavirus pandemic is declining due to the spread of vaccination.
Iran has received supplies of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine. The first inoculation was given on national TV on February 8. However, the Government has not yet begun a mass vaccination program, and the Government failed to meets its target of obtaining 2.8 million vaccine doses by March 21.