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Iran rejects virus aid offer from US ‘charlatans’ as cases soar

Iran’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei says his country will never accept any aid to fight the novel coronavirus from arch-enemy and “charlatans” the United States, as Tehran announces 129 new deaths.

Speaking in a televised address, Khamenei charges in a message directed at Washington: “No one trusts you. You are capable of bringing into our country a drug that will keep the virus alive and prevent its eradication.”

Iran has been one of the countries worst hit by the COVID-19 illness along with Italy, Spain and China, and the latest fatalities raised the official death toll to 1,685, the health ministry said.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaks in a meeting with army’s air force and air defense staff, in Tehran, Iran, February 8, 2020. (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP)

“Today America is our most ferocious and vicious enemy,” Khamenei says. “The American leaders are liars, manipulators, impudent and greedy … They are charlatans,” he says, also labeling them “absolutely ruthless” and “terrorists.”

— AFP

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