Iran’s Foreign Ministry has blasted the latest round of US sanctions against over a dozen Iranian banks, saying those who favor the Israeli prime minister’s interests over the Americans’ are luring the US president into targeting ordinary Iranian people.
A Washington Post report said on Thursday that the US’ move to blacklist the entire financial industry of Iran “has been pushed by Israeli officials and the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a hawkish US non-profit organization that has advocated for regime change in Iran.”
In a post on his Twitter account, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh referred to the Post report and said, “Frustrated by humiliating failures and futility of ‘maximum pressure’, Bibi-Firsters lure Trump into doubling down on inhumane targeting of ordinary Iranians.”
By Bibi-Firsters, Khatibzadeh was
“The same gang has carelessly gambled with America’s interests and reputation for past 4 years. Once again, they’ll lose,” he added.
In defiance of Europe’s humanitarian objections, the US Treasury Department announced sanctions on 18 Iranian banks on Thursday.
The Trump administration took the punitive action with an aim to cut off the Islamic Republic from the world’s financial system.
The Treasury Department failed to come up with any specific accusations against most of the banks. It just declared that the Iranian financial sector may be used to support the government’s nuclear program and its “malign regional influence.”
‘New sanctions prove US humanitarian gesture fake’
Governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) Abdolnasser Hemmati says the new sanctions prove the US leaders’ claim that the country advocates human rights is a “sheer lie and a deceit.”
“The US move has been made for the purpose of propaganda and domestic politics of America,” he said, downplaying the economic impacts of the new sanctions.
“Such measures will definitely be remembered by the Iranian nation,” Hemmati said.
“While in the past few months, we have had trouble supplying food and medicine for the people because of the US maximum pressure; but so far, we have prevented any shortage using certain channels and methods,” he said, vowing that the Central Bank will continue to prevent any further pressure on the Iranian people in this regard.
The Trump administration has claimed humanitarian goods are exempt from its sanction, but a web of sanctions tied around Iran over years has made foreign banks and companies extremely wary of engaging in any trade with the Islamic Republic.
Health officials say Iran can produce more than 96 percent of its medical needs. But specialist treatments such as those for cancer or donor transplants often rely on imports.
The Treasury on Thursday said the sanctions did not apply to transactions for the provision of agricultural commodities, food, medicine or medical devices to Iran, but European diplomats have said that US sanctions have dire humanitarian consequences.
According to Bloomberg, the new measures could sharply hinder Iran’s ability to secure supplies of food and medicine at a time the country struggles to contain a resurgence of the coronavirus outbreak.