Ayatollah Ali Khamenei reacts furiously to an American offer of help to fight the coronavirus. Iran is not waiting for assistance from ‘charlatans and liars’.
The Supreme Leader of Iran sweeps the floor on national television with American help in the fight against the pandemic. “What a strange offer,” said Ali Khamenei. “You Americans lack everything in the fight against the coronavirus. Moreover, you are accused of creating this virus. I don’t know if this is true, but if these kinds of accusations are going around, can you, as a sensible man, trust your Americans and accept help? You could give us medicines that spread the virus or ensure that it never goes away,” said the Supreme Leader in Iran who has the final say on all matters.
“Our number one enemy is America. It is Iran’s worst enemy. Its leaders are terrorists, liars, and charlatans,” the Supreme Leader said on state television. President Hassan Rouhani accuses Washington of the US sanctions that seriously frustrate the fight against the coronavirus. He, therefore, calls on the US government to lift sanctions against Iran.
With Khamenei’s response, the American offer is finally over, although Iran can use any help. The country is hit hard in the corona crisis, with nearly 1,700 deaths and more than 21,000 contamination cases. The major political disputes, especially about the Iranian nuclear program, do not allow support from the ‘Great Satan’, as Khamenei often calls the US.
Donald Trump tore in 2018 the three-year-earlier agreement in which Iran renounced its nuclear weapons aspirations in exchange for lifting international sanctions. Since then, Iran has been hit by new severe US sanctions that are hitting the economy and the population hard. The assassination attempt in Iraq on General Qassem Soleimani, a personal friend of Ali Khamenei, deepened the feud.