Imam Khamenei: Iran must reach self-reliance in Covid-19 vaccine
Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Imam Ali Khamenei, has blamed foreign vaccine sellers for the lack of sufficient coronavirus vaccines, reiterating his call for Iran to achieve self-reliance in vaccine production.
In his remarks after receiving the second dose of the indigenously-produced COVIran Baraket vaccine in Tehran Friday, Ayatollah Khamenei urged officials to focus on domestic production of Covid-19 vaccines and to ensure smooth vaccine roll-out.
“This issue (of disruption in access to vaccines) once again reminded the people and officials that relying on others causes problems, so we must be able to stand on our own feet in all matters,” the Leader asserted.
Imam Khamenei touched on many mutations of the virus and their cataclysmic dangers, urging the people to comply with all necessary heath protocols, as recommended by health authorities.
He said the full compliance with health guidelines will eradicate the disease or contain it from spreading.
The Supreme Leader, who received his first jab of the vaccine developed by Iran’s Shifa Pharmed Industrial Group on June 25, lauded the efforts of healthcare workers, especially the scientists and researchers involved in the production of local vaccines.
He called on the government agencies to “seriously support” the production of domestic vaccines so that the delay in administering vaccines to people of all age-groups can be reduced.
Khuzestan grievances valid, need for vigilance
In other remarks, the Leader said the grievances of people in the southwestern province of Khuzestan are valid, adding the complaints should have been addressed before to prevent people from being upset over the situation.
The province has been rocked by protests in recent weeks over water shortage. The demonstrations, however, have been hijacked by enemy forces, resulting in some incidents of violence.
"The people expressed their frustration, but no one can blame them, because the issue of water is not a small thing, especially in that hot climate of Khuzestan," the Leader said, describing the problem as "one of the really painful worries".
Ayatollah Khamenei stated that he had repeatedly notified officials before about the need to address the water issue in Khuzestan.
"If those recommendations had been taken into account, the current situation would certainly have not arisen. It is painful to see that the loyal people of Khuzestan, in spite of all their facilities, natural potentials and factories in the province, are dissatisfied and upset."
Ayatollah Khamenei hailed the people of the border province as “loyal and selfless” and said they remained on the “forefront” during the eight years of war imposed on Iran by Iraq's former dictator Saddam Hussein.
He said the governmental and non-governmental organizations have started work to address the issues in Khuzestan while urging the authorities to seriously follow the demands of the people.
Ayatollah Khamenei also cautioned people against playing into the hands of trouble-makers.