Rouhani says 83 million Iranians “will not forget this crime” by the United States.

Rouhani: U.S. committing crime against humanity by targeting Iranians’ livelihood

October 15, 2019

TEHRAN – President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday that the United States has committed “crime against humanity” by “economic terrorism” against the Iranians.

“Undoubtedly, the United States’ administration has committed a crime against humanity. The United States’ action is economic terrorism,” Rouhani said during a speech at the 66th session of the WHP Regional Committee for the Eastern Mediterranean.

“However,” Rouhani noted, “it does not mean that the Iranian nation has come to its knees, because scientists, researchers, and manufacturers have doubled their efforts despite unprecedented economic pressure and unfair sanctions.” 

The president added, “Today, we are moving toward self-sufficiency.” 

U.S. President Donald Trump abandoned the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA, in May 2108 and returned the previous sanctions and ordered new ones under his administration’s “maximum pressure” policy against Iran.  

In late April, Trump’s administration even introduced a total ban on Iran’s oil export, Iran’s main source of income. The move was intended to strangulate the Iranian economy. 

Medicine is not subject to sanctions, but financial sanctions have made it difficult for Iran to import medicine. 

Rouhani said, “We are thankful to committed physicians who through their efforts prevented people to face health problems and queue up for medicine.”

He noted that the U.S. “cruel sanctions” are “betrayal of humanity and the Iranian people”.

Rouhani said the pullout from an agreement that has been approved by the UN Security Council was a “shame” in the United States. 

Rouhani said the U.S. “violated international law and has included food and medicine in sanctions.”
“The agreement was approved by the United Nations’ Security Council which adds to this shame. So, it [the U.S.] violated international law and has included food and medicine in sanctions.”

Rouhani said 83 million Iranians “will not forget this crime” by the United States.

The president added, “In the world of politics, ethics, and humanity Iran is the victor and the United States the loser.” 

Trump has described his government’s sanctions against Iran as “economic war”. 

Trump has acknowledged that his administration has slapped the “harshest sanctions” against Iran that its kind has never been seen in history.

Rouhani said in June that the U.S. sanctions are examples of “crime against humanity and economic terrorism” because they have targeted ordinary people’s “lives and needs”.

“It should not be said that the U.S. has imposed sanctions on us because they are not sanctions. They are a crime against humanity. They could be called sanctions if they targeted some of our sensitive industries, but they are a crime against humanity and economic terrorism when they target the people’s lives and needs,” he stated.

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on October 9 that the U.S. sanctions and economic war on Iran have targeted ordinary people’s health and livelihood.

During a speech at an international conference on global economy and sanctions held at Alzahra University in Tehran, the foreign minister said that the United States has turned “economy and dollar” into tools of warfare.

“There was a time when such warfare was used to simply limit the activities of some countries. However, new warfare of the United States and what Trump has called the ‘economic war’ have targeted the ordinary people’s livelihood and health,” the chief diplomat lamented.

In an interview with CNN aired on September 24, Zarif said that sanctions are war.

“Sanctions are war. Because in a war, usually military targets are chosen. In sanctions, civilians are the targets. So, it’s war. It’s more than war,” he said.

During a speech at the 42nd session of the UN Human Rights Council in September, Esmaeil Baghaei Hamaneh, Tehran’s ambassador and permanent representative to the UN office in Geneva, called the consequences of unilateral sanctions against Iran “crime against humanity”.


NA/PA

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