1123 GMT April 05, 2020
Refraining from abiding by the US sanctions on Iran, a “collective punishment” imposed on the people of the country, is a “moral and pragmatic imperative”, said the Iranian minister of foreign affairs.
In a Twitter post on Monday, Mohammad Javad Zarif added, Iranian people appreciate the growing global campaign by leaders of the world’s governments and civil societies urging the removal of illegal US sanctions on the Islamic Republic amid the coronavirus spread in the country.
He regretted that this comes as, turning a blind eye to the international outcry for the lifting of the sanctions, the US still is continuing to impede efforts in Iran to fight the virus.
Zarif stressed that refusing to comply with the sanctions is the only way out of the current problem.
“Iranian people appreciate the growing global campaign of government & civil society leaders calling for lifting of illegal U.S. sanctions. U.S. is NOT listening, impeding global fight against #COVID19. The ONLY remedy: DEFY U.S. mass punishment. MORAL & PRAGMATIC imperative,” his Twitter message reads.
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 hindered, among many other things, the delivery of international humanitarian aid, drugs and medical equipment to Iran, particularly, now that the country is fighting against the coronavirus.
As part of international efforts to support Iran in the fight against the virus, so far, countries such as Russia, China, Pakistan and Greece have publically called on the US to lift its sanctions. This comes as the UK has also been reported to be privately pressing the US to ease the sanctions on Iran, according to theguardian.com.
Moreover, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) as well as 25 other national organizations – including NIAC Action, Truman National Security Project, MoveOn, Win Without War, and Ploughshares Fund – have called on Trump, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to loosen the administration’s crippling sanctions on Iran in order to aid the Iranian people’s fight against the virus.
The coronavirus, which causes a respiratory disease, emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in Hubei Province late last year and is currently affecting a large number of countries and territories across the globe.
On Monday, the speaker of Iran’s Health Ministry, Kianoush Jahanpour, said the total number of infections has reached 23,049 in the country, according to IRNA.
With 127 new deaths in the past 24 hours, the death toll from the virus has reached 1,812, he added, regretting that 1,411 new cases have been identified in the past 24 hours. Jahanpour put the number of the recovered patients at 8,376.