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23 Mar, 2020 16:39

‘Facts matter!’ Pompeo lectures Iranian govt over ‘conspiracy theories’ as US sanctions deprive nation of medicine

‘Facts matter!’ Pompeo lectures Iranian govt over ‘conspiracy theories’ as US sanctions deprive nation of medicine

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has slammed Iran for blaming Washington for coronavirus and accused Tehran of putting “the rest of the world at risk,” even as US sanctions keep sorely-needed medical supplies out of its reach.

Pompeo assailed Iranian Ayatollah Khamenei’s “fabrications that the US is responsible for the #WuhanVirus” in a series of tweets on Monday, claiming the Supreme Leader’s “conspiracy theories” and alleged disregard for the warnings of experts put the health of Iranians, Americans, and others in jeopardy.

The US diplomat outlined what he claimed were missteps by Tehran, including allowing “Iran’s chief terror airline” – an unusual description for the state-owned (and US-sanctioned) carrier Mahan Air – “to fly at least 55 times between Tehran and China.” He blamed those flights for “at least five countries’ first cases of #COVID19,” though he provided no evidence to back this claim up.

Pompeo’s other accusations – that “the Iranian regime ignored repeated warnings from its own health officials” and continues to lie about the number of coronavirus casualties, and that Tehran has sent over $16 billion to “terrorist proxies in the Middle East” since 2012 while stealing medical aid and hoarding supplies “for sale on the black market” – were similarly not backed up by proof. That didn’t stop the ex-CIA director from marking them “FACT” in all-capitals, of course.

The US has dangled vague offers of help in front of Iran, even while tightening sanctions and refusing to let up on its “maximum pressure” campaign designed to trigger regime change, eliciting condemnation from human rights organizations. The Islamic Republic has been one of the hardest-hit nations in this pandemic, with a death toll over 1,800 people as of Monday, including several government officials, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Even as US sanctions prevent Tehran from accessing much-needed medical supplies and drugs, Washington has blamed the country for the spread of coronavirus throughout the Middle East and claimed its government is hiding the true scope of the outbreak within its borders.

Also on rt.com It’s strange for US to offer help against Covid-19 outbreak after ‘accusations’ it created the virus – Iran’s Khamenei

Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif has hit back, accusing Washington of “utter contempt for human life,” while some Iranian officials even made headlines, claiming it was the US who’d unleashed the virus in the first place (without elaborating on details, however).

Pompeo’s insistence that “facts matter” was met with derision in the comments, where several people brought up his 2019 speech to West Point Academy’s graduating class in which he bragged about having “entire training courses” in the arts of lying, cheating, and stealing.

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