World should not remain silent on inhumane conduct of the U.S., says Iran’s health minister

November 30, 2019 - 16:51

TEHRAN – Iranian Health Minister Saeed Namaki in separate letters to UN Secretary-General António Guterres, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) Executive Director Henrietta H. Fore, and World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom, urged the international community to break the silence on inhumane sanctions imposed by the United States against the country.

“I urge you to take necessary measures to end the illegitimate unilateral coercive measures and inhumane conduct of the United States that is inflicting pain and death upon Iranians, bringing negative consequences for global health and health security,” Namaki wrote in his letter to WHO director-general on November 17. 

Previous instances of silence brought nothing but shame for humanity and our collective human consciousness, he stressed.

Iranians are victims of far-reaching tools of U.S. economic warfare

“As you are certainly aware, my brave fellow Iranians are the victims of far-reaching tools of economic warfare inflicted by the Government of the United States of America,” he added.

The tight restrictions imposed through the United States’ unilateral coercive measures (UCM) have made the procurement and importation of food, medicines and medical devices all but impossible for my fellow citizens, he noted. 

While on paper, the claim is that these harsh measures do not include medicines, foodstuff, and medical devices, the blocking of almost all financial transactions with my country, through the international banking system, and the re-imposition of the recent draconian regulations that require absurd amounts of information for any company involved in “humanitarian transactions”, could not be described as anything but a deliberate attempt to prevent such goods from entering Iran in reach the people in need, Namaki explained.

As President Rouhani addressed the opening ceremony of the 66th Session of WHO Regional Committee for the Eastern Mediterranean Region, the United States, through sanctioning Iran, has not only engaged in “economic terrorism”, but is surely committing crimes against humanity, the letter also reads. 

“The major obstacles for importing medicines and medical devices have negatively affected the quality of pharmaceuticals and treatment options available to Iranian patients. In particular, they have impeded the ability to maintain radiotherapy machines for the treatment of cancer patients, preventing cobalt sources, PET scan Cyclotrons and Gamma Knife even simple bandage care for children with EB for Iranian patients.” 

“Two American pharmaceutical companies, which exclusively produce specific medicines for Mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS) patients, have clearly denied the provision of these drugs to be imported to Iran. These are certainly against our global commitment to achieve Universal Health Coverage, leave no one behind and providing health for all.”

The U.S. has demonstrated disregard for international law and UN charter

Namaki went on to say that the Islamic Republic of Iran has always sought constructive and dignified engagement with the world on the basis of shared interests and mutual respects. On the contrary, the United States has demonstrated complete and utter disregard for International Law and the United Nations Charter, mainly through its unilateral withdrawal from the JCPOA, among other examples of disastrous unilateralism and illegality.

“I would like to inform you that Iranian patients are at the risk of mortality and amplified side effects due to the shortage of drugs and medical devices. I, as the Minister of Health and Medical Education, am responsible for assuring access to adequate medications and medical services to my compatriots. 

I wish to stress - this is a preventable disaster in every sense. I believe that the WHO as the main agency responsible for the implementation of Universal Health Coverage cannot and should not remain silent on this matter.”

“Previous instances of silence brought nothing but shame for humanity and our collective human consciousness. The Iranian people have seen silence from the International Community in the past - including when Saddam Hussein used chemical weapons against them. We shall not allow the international community to repeat that mistake again.

The United States administration must be held accountable for its actions which have detrimentally affected the rule of law, including human rights and humanitarian law, multilateralism and the foundations of international diplomacy. Most importantly, our innocent civilians are the prime victims of such measures by the United States.”

Thus, I urge you to take necessary measures to end the illegitimate unilateral coercive measures and inhumane conduct of the United States that is inflicting pain and death upon Iranians, bringing negative consequences for global health and health security. History will be the judge of the responses to this preventable situation.


FB/MG

Leave a Comment

5 + 0 =