Tuesday, December 6, 2022

US Sanctions on Iran Harming Region’s Health Sector: VP

Iran’s First Vice-President Es’haq Jahangiri says international associations must not keep silent over the US unilateral and unlawful policies, including the sanctions that are causing extensive damages, especially in the health sector.

The first vice-president said “unfortunately today we see the destructive, unconventional and inhuman behaviour of the US government against the Iranian people.”

“Unfortunately, in violation of the human rights regulations, the US government has created serious problems through its inhumane measures and by imposing the most severe sanctions on the health sector. It has seriously threatened the supply of medicines and medical equipment for the patients, endangering the lives of many.”

Jahangiri made the remarks on Monday at the seventh edition of World Health Summit Regional Meeting which is underway on Kish Island, south of Iran.

“Fortunately, with the efforts of our country’s researchers and scientists, a significant portion of the country’s medical needs are produced inside the country. They even produce a surplus that can be exported to the countries in need. Our imports are limited to specific items and supplies, but the US government’s obstructionism and threats have forced the companies to discontinue sending them to Iran, and prevented the purchase and transfer of these items to the country,” he underscored.

Jahangiri stated that Iran’s expectation from the international organisations, especially the World Health Organization, is that it does not keep silent over the unilateral and unlawful policies of the US government, especially in the health sector which is directly affecting the lives of the people, and is a completely humanitarian subject.

The international bodies must use all the powers available against the US government’s inhuman policies, reiterated Jahangiri.

“We call on regional countries to pave the ground to overcome regional problems such as boycotts, by expanding regional cooperation in manufacturing of medicine and medical equipment, as well as creating infrastructure for cooperation between active centres and companies in the health sector,” he noted.

Considering the role of Iran in supplying a large portion of the pharmaceutical needs of the countries of the region, we believe that sanctions on the health sector of Iran would mean imposing sanctions on the health sectors of the countries of the region.”

Jahangiri pointed out that Iran has fulfiled all its obligations under the nuclear deal and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has repeatedly affirmed the Islamic Republic’s abiding by its commitments.

“The US government has not only failed to fulfil its obligations, but has imposed the hardest possible sanctions against the Iranian people, as they have acknowledged themselves. Americans are lying that the target of sanctions is the Iranian government, while the sanctions are putting pressure on the Iranian nation and their livings.”

“With poor excuses and pressured by the Zionist lobby, the US withdrew from the JCPOA as an important international agreement that would help establish peace and security in the region and the world,” he noted.

“Fortunately, in recent years, our country’s young researchers have managed to develop the knowledge of the health sector, including the achievements in the fields of nuclear medicine, stem cells, repair of neural systems, the production of various drugs for the treatment of high-risk diseases and dozens of other achievements.”

“Our scientists come first in many areas, especially in the health sciences. Our universities have attracted thousands of students from all over the world, despite the sanctions and the difficulties, and there are many research projects being carried out with the participation of scientists from the world’s top universities in the country.

“To improve health, we need to enjoy a safe environment, coexistence and peace. Throughout its history, Iran has been a land of friendship and the cradle of science, knowledge, art and literature.

“Today, we are the same people who are after building a healthy and peaceful world with a healthy and sustainable development of health. We seek to eliminate all threats and sanctions [from the world] and make a world free from violence, aggression, and insecurity.

“This Health Summit is worthy of praise at a time when our dear country is facing the cruelest sanctions. The presence of more than 100 scientists from about 50 countries around the world at this important meeting indicates that although health has become a political issue today, scientists and health system experts aim to improve human life beyond the political boundaries and in accordance with the principles of scientific participation and social commitments.

“Our country and the region in which we are located are subject to extensive and profound changes due to geographical conditions and political relations, but the Islamic Republic has managed to overcome various difficulties successfully. Our region has suffered the most from global extremism and terrorism, but it is on the brink of removing countries from this anti-human threat.

“The recent flood in Iran was a serious test for the US government’s human rights slogans. While Iran was engaged with a devastating flood and more than half of the country’s provinces suffered heavy losses, US cruel restrictions and sanctions prevented the assistance of other countries and international organisations to flood-stricken people.

“In the meantime, even relief agencies such as the Red Crescent Society of the Islamic Republic of Iran were not excluded from the sanctions, and there were a lot of restrictions on the international relief efforts. Of course, this is a great honour for the Islamic Republic of Iran to announce that in spite of all these restrictions, and with the efforts of all the health sector practitioners, including physicians, nurses, health workers and administrators of this sector, no epidemic disease was recorded in the flood-hit areas so far. Hereby, I am obliged to express my gratitude to all those who have been working on this issue round the clock.

“Now we are exposed to various natural disasters caused by human interference. Over the last few weeks, flash floods caused our country to suffer from various health problems. But the nation and the government did not hesitate to send aid.

“More than half of the world’s refugees and displaced people by war and terrorism are living in this part of the world. Over the past four decades, our country has provided more than 3 million refugees with the health services with the least use of international assistance.

“Nowadays, the executive officials of the country, along with people and civil institutions, seek to ensure that citizens affected by the flood would not be threatened by the health, physical, psychological, and social issues.

“Today’s issue is the healthy reconstruction of cities and villages in a sustainable development path. Naturally, health is the cornerstone of this move. I hope that the outcome of the discussions and scientific exchanges of this meeting will be another step towards achieving sustainable development of health and expanding scientific and technical cooperation in this region and other parts of the world,” he concluded.

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