Sanctions unilaterally imposed by Washington have hindered efforts to provide relief to Iranians affected by a series of deadly floods, Iran’s Foreign Ministry has claimed, describing US posturing as “economic terrorism.”
Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Ghasemi said on Monday that the US’ decision to block bank accounts belonging to Iran’s Red Crescent has prevented donations from abroad from reaching Iranians who are in desperate need of aid.
At least 45 people have died in the past two weeks after torrential downpours in Iran resulted in 23 of the country’s 31 provinces being hit by floods. With more flooding expected in Iran’s southwest province of Khuzestan, Tehran’s appeals for international assistance have been hampered by US efforts to cut the country off from the global economy.
“Since all the accounts of Iran Red Crescent have been frozen [by US sanctions], no one can send their financial aid from overseas,” Ghasemi said on Monday, as cited by Mehr News Agency.
Earlier on Monday, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif accused Washington of “impeding aid efforts” as Tehran scrambles to provide relief to communities devastated by the “unprecedented” floods. By depriving Iran of much needed resources and equipment, the US is guilty of “economic terrorism,” Zarif said.
.@realDonaldTrump ‘s "maximum pressure"—flouting UNSC Res 2231 & ICJ ruling—is impeding aid efforts by #IranianRedCrescent to all communities devastated by unprecedented floods. Blocked equipment includes relief choppers: This isn't just economic warfare; it's economic TERRORISM. pic.twitter.com/EEKTMiXLEi
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) April 1, 2019
Read more: ‘Economic terrorism’: US blocking humanitarian aid to flood victims, Iran’s Foreign Ministry says