U.S. violating peremptory norms by blocking IMF loan to Iran: Shamkhani

April 25, 2020 - 21:49

TEHRAN - Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), said on Saturday that the United States’ attempts to block Iran’s efforts to get a loan from the International Monetary Fund violate peremptory norms of general international law.

“U.S. opposition to Iran’s request from the International Monetary Fund is a violation of preemptory norms of the right to health,” Shamkhani tweeted. 
He said that third countries have two commitments in this respect: one is to stop cooperation with the violating government and another is to take action to settle the issue.

The top security official also criticized Europe’s stance on the issue.

Iran applied for emergency IMF funding in March to help it fight the coronavirus outbreak. Washington has indicated it will block IMF funding for Iran.

Donald Trump’s administration is not only refusing to remove its illegal sanctions on Iran, it is also blocking Tehran’s efforts to get an emergency loan from the IMF to cope with the coronavirus crisis.

European Union foreign policy chief Joseph Borrell on Wednesday criticized the U.S. for blocking Iran’s request for loan from the IMF.

"I regret that ... the United States are opposing the International Monetary Fund to take this decision," he said during a virtual press conference at the end of a video meeting of EU foreign affairs ministers, Politico reported 

"From the humanitarian point of view, this decision, this request should have been accepted."

Iran’s central banker, Abdolnaser Hemmati, has said the IMF should put politics aside and do its professional duties. 

“I would like to repeat that all UN organizations, say the IMF or WHO, should stay away from politics and deliver on their institutional mandates,” Hemmati said in an interview with Bloomberg published on April 19. 

Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein in a letter has urged Trump not to block Iran's access to a $5 billion loan from the IMF to help fight the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

“I am disappointed to see reports that your administration intends to block Iran from receiving $5 billion in humanitarian aid from the IMF to combat the coronavirus pandemic,” Feinstein wrote in her letter to Trump. 

“Providing these funds to Iran would help it respond more effectively to the disease and mitigate the risk of further destabilization in the region,” she added.


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