1247 GMT January 19, 2019
The comments by Zarif came after Mike Pompeo had told BBC Persian that “the Saudis have provided millions and millions of dollars of humanitarian relief” for Yemenis.
Provided heavy weaponry by the United States and some Western states, a Saudi-led coalition has been pounding Yemen since March 2015 to restore former president, Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, a staunch ally of Riyadh and undermine the Houthi Ansarullah movement, triggering a food and humanitarian crisis in the impoverished country.
“You know what Secretary Pompeo? It's the Yemenis themselves who're responsible for famine they're facing. They should've simply allowed your butcher clients – who spend billions on bombing school buses & "millions to mitigate this risk"— to annihilate them without resisting,” Zarif tweeted.
The Iranian foreign minister incorporated #HaveYouNoShame at the bottom of the tweet.
The coalition has also ignored repeated warnings that the heavily defended Red Sea port under attack will trigger a food and humanitarian crisis in Yemen. The offensive on Hodeida was launched on June 12.
The Legal Center for Rights and Developments in Yemen has recently said the ongoing Saudi-led military campaign against the impoverished and conflict-plagued Arab country has claimed the lives of more than 15,000 civilians.
In his interview with BBC Persian, Pompeo had claimed that “the challenge in Yemen is in large part the responsibility of the Iranian leadership,” repeating Washington’s allegation against Tehran of arming Yemen’s popular fighters, which the Islamic Republic roundly denies.
“Just as with Yemen, Secretary Pompeo blames Iran for unlawful US sanctions preventing Iranians’ access to financial services for food and medicine,” Zarif said, adding, “Naturally, we will provide them for our people in spite of US efforts.”
Pompeo had, however, claimed that none of US sanctions prevented humanitarian assistance to the Iranian people.
The new round of US sanctions, which had been lifted under a multilateral 2015 nuclear accord with Iran, came back into force on Nov. 5, drawing criticisms from the United Nations as well as Washington’s allies in the European Union.
The bans – the second of their kind since Washington’s withdrawal from the deal in May – take aim at Iran’s banking, insurance and energy sectors, targeting more than 700 entities. The first round was reinstated in August.
Press TV contributed to the story.