Eight Iranian provinces have suffered severe damage in recent floods and thousands of residents have been impacted across 51 cities in Bushehr, Fars, Golestan, Ilam, Khuzestan, Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad, Lorestan, and Qazvin.
In Khuzestan, floodwaters disrupted traffic in the cities of Ahvaz, Mahshahr, Omidiyeh, and Ramshir, while in the mountainous areas of Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad province, landslides have blocked roads.
“Heavy rainfalls will bring society’s health in a more dangerous situation during the coronavirus outbreak. This is while according to forecasts, we will have a lot of rain in the coming days,” said Majid Nasserinejad, MP from Khuzestan province.
This is interesting because the politicians and the state-run media are eager to blame these floods solely on the rain. However, the truth is that meteorology centers began warning about this heavy rain in November. Notably, this is the third year in a row that a large number of provinces saw major floods at this time.
Given that, shouldn’t the authorities have enacted some sort of evacuation plan over the past couple of months? Shouldn’t they have built better flood defenses? Shouldn’t they have done something?
The sad truth is that the government is not doing anything to prevent the floods or mitigate the damage, even though they certainly have enough money stored away to do so. They are not dredging lakes or rivers, clearing the drains, or even refraining from the environmental destruction that is causing banks to burst. Even Naserinejad admitted this, warning that the floods could become more serious.
And yes, they could. Two years on from the 2018 floods and those who lost their homes are still living in makeshift shanties that are at risk of being torn down by the authorities because they’re not up to code or don’t have the right permits.
To add insult to injury, Defense Minister Amir Hatami announced that defense spending would be doubled in the next budget, at a time when people are struggling to make ends meet because of the irreparably broken economy.
Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), expressed her deep sympathy with the people affected by the floods and asked for all Iranians to rush to their aid. She then called out the regime for its “destructive policies in wasting our nation’s wealth in unpatriotic nuclear, missile programs, [and] the export of terror and war” which has made Iranians “vulnerable” to floods, earthquakes, and the coronavirus.