Iranian ambassador: Let science, not politics, speak on coronavirus origin
Published: Aug 20, 2021 12:00 AM
Editor's note: Decision Makers is a global platform for decision-makers to share their insights on events shaping today's world. Washington is busy promoting the "lab-leak theory" in an attempt to attribute the COVID-19 pandemic to China, even when the experts from World Health Organization (WHO) already said in a report that it is "extremely unlikely" that the virus spread from a lab leak. On the topics of the COVID-19, the coronavirus origin, and how China has contributed in helping other nations get vaccines, we interviewed the Iranian Ambassador to China Mohammad Keshavarzzadeh. The article reflects the guest's opinions and not necessarily the views of CGTN.

Mohammad Keshavarzzadeh  
Photo: Yu Tianjiao/GT

Mohammad Keshavarzzadeh Photo: Yu Tianjiao/GT

Wang Guan
: U.S. President Joe Biden launched an investigation to probe the origin of coronavirus, particularly to see if it is a leak from China's Wuhan Institute of Virology. How do you look at such an origin-tracing mission?

Ambassador Keshavarzzadeh: This is a scientific issue. It shouldn't be politicized to use as a scapegoat for the failure of the wrongdoing to combat the virus. I think the WHO is right and the relevant organization to say about that, not the countries to issue such a thing. We know that the United States has politicized it, they have the kind of the problem with China. I think it's not good.

It shouldn't be politicized, we should leave it to the science people. I have read the report that the Chinese government was very cooperative on that to give information. This is the best way. I think that misleading the people is not good, especially on such issue that we lost a lot of lives of our beloved in Iran and also elsewhere. We should come together. I think that the Americans, the Chinese, the Iranians should put our hands together to combat because this is a disease that all of us are damaged.

Wang Guan: Talking about perception of the country, the media narratives matter. I think Iran faces similar challenges globally. China is too. Depending on who you listen to these days, the Western media tends to portray China as an aggressive power seeking to replace the West, replace the so-called rules-based system, but this view is not necessarily shared across the rest of the world. How do you look at the role of China globally?

Ambassador Keshavarzzadeh: We should look at the issues as to see the fact that we see the statistic, we see how China is ruling here and also the Chinese people share their assets for other people. For example, I will give you something which unfortunately is manipulated by the Western media. Look at this pandemic. Now, China has sent vaccines to more than 100 countries. Unfortunately, in the Western countries, you cannot see such things as donations by the Chinese government of the medical equipment or to help the other countries for progress.

It came from the idea of which the Chinese leader said about the win-win policy. This is at the main core for the world, because as President Xi Jinping said that they should have shared futures. This is very important for the countries. The pandemic shows that you cannot single out yourself and say that I am a progress country and my value should be suppressed to others. This is a very important call. Iran and China, they cooperate in different ways. We need to share our experience to build a better future for the human beings. This is very important.

Unfortunately, Iran has been damaged by the lack of medical equipment which we are supposed to receive. Because of the U.S. sanctions, we couldn't buy a vaccine, or even buy the pharmaceutical products or anything. We wanted to buy vaccines from COVAX, but we had a problem to pay, because the Americans block our money. At this time, we received a lot of medical equipment and vaccines from China.