Iran’s foreign minister has accused the U.S of “conspiring to starve a population” during the coronavirus pandemic with its fresh round of sanctions that are expected to hit its economy hard.
The comments by Mohammad Javad Zarif come after the U.S. slapped fresh sanctions on the financial sector of the Islamic republic targeting 18 banks and further isolating the country from the global banking sector.
The measures by the U.S. come days before a United Nations arms embargo on the country is set to expire and threaten to effectively lock Iran out of the global financial system, with possibly dire consequences for its currency, the rial, and its economy.
Steven Mnuchin, U.S. Treasury secretary said in a statement that the latest sanctions aimed to cut off Tehran’s “illicit access to U.S. dollars,” and tough measures would continue “until Iran stops its support of terrorist activities and ends its nuclear programmes.”
But Zarif condemned the move, tweeting: “Amid Covid19 pandemic, U.S. regime wants to blow up our remaining channels to pay for food & medicine. Iranians WILL survive this latest of cruelties.”
Amid Covid19 pandemic, U.S. regime wants to blow up our remaining channels to pay for food & medicine.
Iranians WILL survive this latest of cruelties.
But conspiring to starve a population is a crime against humanity. Culprits & enablersâwho block our moneyâWILL face justice. pic.twitter.com/n0fnXPNik8
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) October 8, 2020
Video: Japarov supporters clash with opposition groups in Bishkek. (AFP)