Government Criticized for Slow Response
Iran had earlier refused to accept foreign aid for the victims of the 11 August twin quakes of 6.4- and 6.3-magnitudes that have killed more than 300 people, and injuring nearly 5,000. Rahimi’s announcement was a reversal of the earlier policy.
Meanwhile, there are growing criticism of the Iranian government’s slow response to the crisis. Majlis speaker Ali Larijani called on the cisis management team to “take broader steps to alleviate these concerns.”
The daily Asr-e Iran reported that three days after the earthquake, some villages had not yet been visited by relief teams. The paper quoted residents as saying that in some of the villages that were destroyed there were still no tents.
IRNA reported today that most villages still did not have electricity or drinking water.
Iranian bloggers are also criticizing President Ahmadinejad for leaving the country to attend the Mecca Summit without visiting the earthquake-stricken region.
Photo Credit: City of Varzeqan, in the northwestern province of East Azerbaijan. 13 August 2012. epa/RFERL.