Ayatollah Khamenei blames Western culture, atheism for coronavirus response failings

Al-Monitor – Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei addressed Iranians for the first time since March 22, which marked the Iranian New Year, or Nowruz. In his live speech today, on the occasion of the birth of Imam Mahdi, Ayatollah Khamenei spoke about the country’s efforts to combat the coronavirus.

Ayatollah Khamenei said that the efforts of health care workers who worked through the Nowruz holidays will “leave a good memory in the minds of the Iranian people.” He also thanked the armed forces for supplying hospital beds and medical equipment.

In response to the early criticism Iran faced for how it handled the coronavirus compared to how it has seemingly flattened the curve, particularly in the last few days, Ayatollah Khamenei said, “Despite how they tried to humiliate the Islamic-Iranian culture and push people to a Western lifestyle, these actions showed that Islamic thought and culture is firm and strong among the Iranian people.”

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