Exclusive: Iran invited Doctors without Borders but became suspicious of them

While Islamic Republic officials have rejected the offer of Doctors without Borders (MSF) to build a field hospital in Isfahan, Iran International has acquired documents that show that it was the regime of Iran that initially had asked Doctors without Borders for help.

According to Iran International documents, three ministries of Health, Interior, and Foreign Affairs had coordinated in inviting Doctors without Borders to Iran for help against the coronavirus.

Doctors without Borders is a non-governmental organization that deploys doctors, nurses, and volunteers to disaster-stricken areas in the world.

One of the documents is the organization's request to establish a field hospital in Lorestan province.

The Islamic Republic has claimed the reason for this rejection is that Iran’s needs are not compatible with the aid provided by the MSF, but Iran International’s documents show that the regime was fully supporting the presence of the organization in Iran before the supreme leader's promotion of the conspiracy theory about the role of the United States in creating the virus, the activities of the organization were stopped in Iran.

Iran International's documents show that the aids that the Doctors without Borders provided in Iran was not limited to field hospitals, but also improving the knowledge of Iranian medical staff and creating a channel for scientific communication and exchange. It also indicated that the regime of Iran had taken great measures to utilize MSF aid.

But after the leader’s comments, on Monday, a number of Islamic Republic officials including Hossein Shariatmadari, the leader’s representative in Keyhan newspaper, explicitly opposed the presence of Doctors without Borders in Iran, who described it as “a dangerous carelessness”, and called for their expulsion from the country.

An adviser to Iran's Minister of Health also rejected the offer of Doctors Without Borders for help in fighting the coronavirus. The advisor thanked the organization but said that with the medical capacity of the armed forces, there is no need for the presence of foreign forces.


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