IranMiddle East

IRGC, Basij Forces Prepare, Distribute over 3.5mln Public Aid Packages among Lower Classes

Spokesman of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Brigadier General Ramezan Sharif said that the IRGC and Basij (volunteer) forces in cooperation with people across Iran have prepared and distributed over 3.5mln packages of aid among the poor who have been hurt by the coronavirus outbreak.

“People have granted over 305bln tomans (over $70mln) worth of goods or cash aid to the Basij bases and these aids have been organized and packed and distributed among (the lower classes of) people within the framework of 3.55mln packages of foodstuff and supportive aid, of course by respecting people’s dignity,” General Sharif said on Saturday.

He added that all 54,000 Basij bases across Iran have become activated to receive, pack and distribute the aid packages among the poor people.

Elsewhere, General Sharif also said that over 4,800 coronavirus patients have so far been admitted to the IRGC hospitals, adding that the IRGC has set up 9 field hospitals equipped with 561 beds for treating coronavirus patients and prepared 15,700 beds for COVID-19 post-treatment recovery of patients in different cities of Iran.

Also, over 45mln liters of disinfectants, over 26mln pairs of gloves and 62mln masks have been supplied and distributed among different walks of life across Iran, he said.

In relevant remarks in March, General Sharif said that the IRGC had mobilized 100,000 of its members as well as Basij forces to help the government and people in the fight against coronavirus epidemic.

More than 100,000 Basij and IRGC forces are serving people against coronavirus, General Sharif said.

The Iranian health ministry announced on Saturday that 1,529 new cases of coronavirus infection have been diagnosed by the medical centers, noting that more than 85,000 patients have been treated.

“1,529 more patients infected with COVID-19 virus have been identified in the country since yesterday based on confirmed diagnosis criteria,” Health Ministry Spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour said on Saturday.

He added that the number of coronavirus patients in the country has increased to 106,220 people.

Jahanpour said that 6,589 people have lost their lives due to infection to the virus so far, including 48 in the past 24 hours.

He, meantime, stated that 85,064 infected people have recovered and been discharged from hospital, expressing concern that 2,696 patients infected with COVID-19 virus are in critical conditions.

Jahanpour also noted that 573,220 coronavirus diagnosis tests have been carried out in the country so far.

Iranian Health Minister Saeed Namaki stressed on April 7 effective measures to control coronavirus epidemic, expressing the hope that the disease would be controlled in Iran by late May.

“At present, the country is in the phase of disease management and we should not imagine that we have reached the harness and control phase. Today is the time for full-fledged combat against the virus. God willing, we will control coronavirus by late May. The virus should be controlled in the minimum possible time,” Namaki said, addressing the Iranian legislators in an open session of the parliament in Tehran.

He noted that at least 30% to 50% of hospital beds are still vacant across Iran and nearly 15,000 beds are ready to keep the patients who are recovering from coronavirus disease.

“We have now moved down to tank 6th in terms of deaths,” Namaki said, adding that the country’s situation in treatment of patients will improve in the next few days.

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 276,400 people and infected over 4.02 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), 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.

The government also imposed travel restrictions, specially on Iran’s North, which is among the red zones. The country has also adopted strict digital health control procedures at airports to spot possible infections.

Namaki announced last month that a new national mobilization plan would be implemented across the country to fight against the coronavirus epidemic and more effectively treat patients.

Namaki said that the plan will include all the 17,000 health centers and the 9,000 medical and clinical centers in all cities, suburban areas and villages.

He added that the plan will include home quarantine, noting that infected people will receive the necessary medicines and advice, but they are asked to stay at home.

Namaki said that people with a more serious condition will stay at the hospitals, adding that the public places will be disinfected, the entries of infected towns and cities will be controlled to diagnose and quarantine the infected cases.

He added that the necessary equipment and facilities have been provided, expressing the hope that the epidemic would be curbed.

According to the latest statistics of Health Ministry, the number of medical laboratories to test coronavirus infection has reached over 90 across the country.

The World Health Organization (WHO) says Iran’s response to the virus has so far been up to the mark. Still, it says the US sanctions are a big challenge, and Washington would be complicit in the rising death toll in Iran if it would not remove its sanctions.

The World Health Organization has considered priorities in combating coronavirus and Islamic Republic of Iran obeys and follows up priorities as defined by WHO.

The WHO is dispatching separate delegations to all countries.

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