Iran needs unity, solidarity more than ever: Ayatollah Khamenei
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei says Iran at the current critical time requires “cooperation, unity and solidarity” more than ever.
He made the remarks during the first in-person meeting with President Hassan Rouhani and members of the National Headquarters for Managing and Fighting the Coronavirus in Tehran on Saturday since the outbreak began.
"In some countries, such as the United States, the worst management has been applied, but we must try to deal with this phenomenon which is linked to the lives and health of the people and their security and economy with the best management," the Leader said as he touched on the handling of the new coronavirus pandemic across the world.
The prerequisite for proper management is "taking decisive governance decisions", "convincing public opinion" and "cooperation of all institutions as well as the cooperation of the people," Ayatollah Khamenei said.
"This cooperation, however, is not limited to countering the coronavirus; rather, it must exist in all issues, especially political issues, because the country, which has a strong nation, a new system and a new discourse, is naturally faced with major problems in the global and domestic arenas," he said.
Despite all these problems, "great work is underway in the country, and by God's grace, no incident has been able to stop the Islamic Republic, but these obstacles, which are slowing down the momentum, must be removed as soon as possible," the Leader added.
Ayatollah Khamenei also praised the National Headquarters for Managing and Fighting the Coronavirus and its affiliated committees, calling the performance of the medical and health personnel "very brilliant" and their practice as "jihad for the sake of God".
The Leader said there is a need to immediately launch a follow-up base and affiliated committees to implement the decisions of the National Headquarters for Managing and Fighting the Coronavirus and monitor their implementation.
The Ministry of Health should also be given centrality in determining and charting out restrictions related to the new coronavirus, he said.
"Once the Ministry of Health has determined the instances of the restriction, the rest of the organizations must comply with them, without taking into account any considerations."
Ayatollah Khamenei said strict control of the country's entry points, restriction of unnecessary intercity traffic along with public persuasion and strict application of rules in the urban transport fleet and public environments are examples of restrictions and the main responsibility for implementing and supervising them lies with the National Headquarters for Managing and Fighting the Coronavirus and law enforcement forces.
The Leader also touched on the living conditions of some people and their employments which have become more difficult by the implementation of strict coronavirus regulations.
"In this regard, the government should consider support packages, while donors and other people should also enter the field and come to the aid of these people because this is one of the best deeds and the best means of approaching God."
Before the speech, President Hassan Rouhani briefed the Leader on measures taken by his administration in the past eight months to counter the coronavirus.
"At the moment, there is no way to deal with this virus other than observing health and prevention guidelines," he said.