Huang Zhihuan, an epidemiologist at the RAND Asia Pacific Policy Research Center, told Global Times global.com on Tuesday that the fatality rate in Iran is about 10%, but this may be due to the fact that some people with mild illness or asymptomatic infection are not included in the statistics in time. According to the data of Chinas case fatality rate of 3%, at present, Irans actual infection may have reached thousands, she said. However, according to the situation that Iran constantly publicizes its senior officials infection through social media, the Iranian government has a high degree of openness and transparency to the epidemic, which should not be deliberately concealed, but may be due to the fact that the identification and detection capabilities are objectively limited.
Hua liming, former ambassador of China to Iran, told the global times global network that because Iran rarely experienced large-scale epidemic in history, the countrys infectious disease reporting, monitoring and tracking system is not sound, and there is no mature response method and experience. So, although Irans medical level is good in the Middle East as a whole, it is still under pressure to deal with such a sudden large-scale infectious disease.
According to the analysis of the Middle East expert, there are three main reasons for the serious spread of the Iranian epidemic in the near future, and the religious customs rank first. Although according to media reports, the Iranian government canceled Friday worship in Tehran and 22 other cities on the 28th, Hua Liming thought that it would not be easy for the decree to last for a long time, and many mosques may not be closed.
Some intellectuals may be able to accept the suspension of religious activities, but from my understanding of Iran, it is difficult for ordinary people to accept it, and it may even cause their strong rebound. he explained that Irans religious activities are activities that people are very close to each other in a closed space, with a large number of people, including kissing and touching the altar, which can easily become a huge biography Dye source.
According to media reports, after the first case of new coronavirus was confirmed on February 19, the Iranian government ordered the closure of shrines and mosques in Qom, the worst affected area, but the citys clergy resisted for several days. Even after Iranian authorities cancelled a three-day religious festival scheduled for early March, residents of Qom refused to comply with the governors Security Councils order to close the altar.
Qom is the most important center of Shiite Islam, where many people have extremely strict and devout religious beliefs. Moreover, power in Iran is in the hands of religious leaders. So the religious sites in Qom have not been closed up to now. In addition, although Fridays big worship was called off, many believers also had to worship at least three times a day for the rest of the week, and believed that the religious ceremony needed to go to the mosque for collective performance. The Iranians are very worried about this, hoping that the government can also order the closure of the mosque, but he also admits that it is very difficult.
The second important factor may be the serious political pressure facing the Iranian government. Hua Liming told reporters that since Irans top military commander was killed by the Americans not long ago, and then Iran mistakenly shot down the Ukrainian civil aviation aircraft, the current Iranian government is very important for the continuous anti-government demonstrations to ensure political security. Therefore, it did not cancel the march on the 41st anniversary of the Islamic revolution in Iran on November 11 and the election on the 21st, which brought many adverse factors to the prevention and control of the epidemic.
The third reason is the cultural custom. The cultural tradition of Iranians is not very acceptable to stay at home for a long time. It is very difficult for them to give up parties, go to cafes, hookahs and other places. Hua Liming said. Another Chinese media person who has been working and living in Iran for a long time told reporters that recently, the price of masks in Iran has been rising all the way, and the poor cant afford to buy them. In addition, economic sanctions make it a difficult problem for Iran to purchase materials from other countries, which will make Iran face more challenges on its difficult anti epidemic road.
It is worth noting that since the deterioration of Irans situation, the epidemic has spread rapidly in the Middle East: Lebanon, Afghanistan, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Iraq and other six countries in the Middle East have seen the first case in succession, all with a history of Irans travel, while Pakistan, Canada and New Zealand have also seen confirmed cases related to Iran.
Zhu Weilie, honorary director of the Middle East Research Institute of Shanghai Foreign Studies University, told the global times global.com that Iran is located at the crossroads of Eurasia and has a wide range of traffic. In case the epidemic goes out of control, the whole Middle East region will face greater pressure. He cautioned that at this time, many countries need to work together to prevent the risk of the epidemic.
Hua Liming told reporters that Kum is the holy place of Shiites all over the world. All year round, devout religious believers will make pilgrimages to the local area in an endless stream, with a huge number of people. However, there are many Iranian immigrants in the West and frequent family visits, which is likely to be the case in Canada and New Zealand. Overall, the risk of spillover in Iran is greater than in many other Middle East countries.
He reminded that in this case, the Middle East should also pay special attention to Iraq and Afghanistan, because the two countries not only have close contacts with Iran, but also are in a state of semi war, and the governments control capacity is seriously insufficient. In case of large-scale communication, they will face a difficult situation.
According to foreign media, Irans Ministry of Health announced Tuesday that schools across the country will continue to be closed until next Tuesday, and called on all people to reduce travel. Iran has imported masks, protective clothing, etc., and relevant factories are also stepping up production. The country also said novel coronavirus pneumonia outbreak in Iran would peak next week.
Irans ambassador to China keshawarzzad said in an interview with global times global.com on August 28 that Iran has translated the diagnosis and treatment plan published in China into Persian and released it to the public. Meanwhile, Iran has also provided the public with various anti epidemic guidelines issued by relevant Chinese academic institutions and research institutes. At the same time, he said that according to the current situation, there is no need to block the more serious areas. According to the global times global network reporter, China has sent an expert group composed of four disease control experts to Iran to support its anti epidemic campaign.
Iranian Health Minister: the coming week will be a very difficult one
Irans health minister namaki announced Tuesday that schools across the country will be closed until next Tuesday, AFP reported. He told state television that the coming week would be a very difficult one.