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Brian Hook Says Iran 'Lied To Own People' Over Coronavirus

Brian Hook, U.S. Special Representative for Iran. FILE PHOTO
Brian Hook, U.S. Special Representative for Iran. FILE PHOTO

US Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook says the Islamic Republic of Iran has lied to its own people about the Coronavirus outbreak in that country.

Hook also regretted that Tehran has rejected Washington's offer of extending relief aide to Iran.

Speaking at a news conference during his visit to Paris on Thursday March 5, Hook said that the Islamic Republic's reaction to the coronavirus outbreak is an indication of the legitimacy crisis in Iran.

"Iran lied to its own people about the coronavirus. It told them it was not anything to worry about but at the same time the virus was spreading throughout Iran," Brian Hook said.

Stating that "Today as a result of the government's mismanagement and not being transparent with its own people Iran has one of the world's worst outbreaks of the coronavirus," Brian Hook added: "We know that there are gaps in their health system, and we wanted to close those gaps. We wish that they had accepted our sincere offer".

Iranian authorities have put the death toll from the Covid-19 virus at 107, making it one of the worst-hit countries after China.

During this week the United States offered help to Iran to fight the virus outbreak, but Tehran rejected the offer, and President Hassan Rouhani blamed the United States "Vicious sanctions" against Iran for the country's problems in the area of supplying medical care to patients.

Iran says so far 107 of its citizens have died and more than 3500 others are living with the virus, but independent sources say the fatality rate and the number of Coronavirus patients in Iran are much higher than official figures.