1107 GMT April 05, 2020
Washington’s cruel unilateral sanctions on Tehran are a major obstacle to Iran’s efforts to fight the highly dangerous coronavirus, said the Iranian foreign minister.
The coronavirus, called COVID-19, initially emerged in China late last year and is now spreading in Europe and across the Middle East.
Mohammad Javad Zarif made the remark on Sunday in a phone conversation with his Azerbaijani counterpart, Elmar Mammadyarov, about the spread of the coronavirus in the region and the world and the necessity of collective cooperation among all countries to contain the pandemic, IRNA reported.
The Iranian minister stressed that Iran and the world will pass through this difficult stage.
He also appreciated the assistance provided by the government and people of Azerbaijan to Iran.
According to the latest statistics, the outbreak has infected over 162,000 people worldwide, killing more than 6,000. In Iran, the epidemic has so far killed 724 people and infected 13,938 others. Some 4,590 people have also recovered in the country.
On Wednesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the novel coronavirus outbreak a pandemic.
In May 2018, President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), signed between Iran and the P5+1 in July 2015, and reimposed Washington’s unilateral sanctions on Tehran. The sanctions have created problems for the delivery of international humanitarian aid, drugs and medical equipment to Iran.