Doubts about Iraqi Govt's Coronavirus Figures

By Mustafa Saadoun for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Cloud of doubt surrounds coronavirus figures reported by Iraqi government

Iraqis are highly skeptical of the statistics announced by the Iraqi government regarding the country's number of coronavirus cases. This doubt is evident in media reports and blogs of journalists and activists on social media.

Health Minister Jaafar Allawi said April 12 in a television interview, "The number of coronavirus cases is subject to international monitoring. Death certificates and forensic medicine are monitored and coronavirus statistics cannot be manipulated in any way." As of April 14, the country had registered 1,400 cases and 78 deaths, according to a statement by the Health Ministry.

An administrator working at a medical center east of Baghdad said during an interview with Al-Monitor on condition of anonymity, "The numbers that the Iraqi Health Ministry announces daily are not the real numbers. On one day, we recorded more than 30 cases in one health center, but in the evening the Iraqi statistics that were revealed showed fewer cases than those recorded in our center."

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