The number of deaths from coronavirus in Iran is nearly triple what Iran’s government claims, a BBC Persian service investigation has found.
The government’s own records appear to show almost 42,000 people died with Covid-19 symptoms up to 20 July, versus 14,405 reported by its health ministry.
The number of people known to be infected is also almost double official figures: 451,024 as opposed to 278,827.
The official numbers still make Iran the worst-hit in the Middle East.
In recent weeks, it has suffered a second steep rise in the number of cases.
The first death in Iran from Covid-19 was recorded on 22 January, according to lists and medical records that have been passed to the BBC. This was almost a month before the first official case of coronavirus was reported there.