Columbia University professor urges removal of Iran sanctions

May 17, 2020 - 15:33

TEHRAN - Robert Jervis, a professor of Columbia University, has slammed the United States’ sanctions on Iran, urging their removal in the coronavirus pandemic.

“I support removal or suspension of sanctions in a crisis such as a pandemic. I believe the Trump administration must end sanctions against Iran for humanitarian reasons,” he told ILNA in an interview published on Sunday.

However, Jervis expressed doubt that U.S. President Donald Trump would remove sanctions.

Removing the sanctions means admitting a wrong policy by Trump, he noted.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet has urged the United States to lift sanctions on Iran and Venezuela, stressing that the sanitary situation called for such a move in order to save lives.

In an interview with France 24 published on Friday, she added that the medical exemptions to those sanctions touted by the Trump administration were too narrow and said only a suspension or a lifting of the sanctions would have a real impact.

Bachelet also said on March 24 that “in a context of a global pandemic, impeding medical efforts in one country heightens the risk for all of us.”

“At this crucial time, both for global public health reasons, and to support the rights and lives of millions of people in these countries, sectoral sanctions should be eased or suspended,” she said in a statement.

U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein has said that the United States should provide partial, temporary sanctions relief to Iran when the country is fighting the coronavirus.

“The U.S. should provide partial, temporary sanctions relief to Iran and facilitate efforts by international organizations to provide humanitarian funds and supplies so the country can respond more effectively to its coronavirus outbreak. Doing so would reduce popular resentment in Iran against the U.S. and help contain the spread of the disease throughout the region,” she wrote in an article titled, “U.S. and Iran Need a Coronavirus Peace Plan” published by Bloomberg on Thursday.

President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday harshly slammed U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who is infamous for his anti-Iran approach. Rouhani said Pompeo does not know the ABC of politics. Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has already called Pompeo “secretary of hate”.

Rouhani also said the “worst” and “most devil” administration is ruling the United States.

“It has been for two years that we face the worst administration. I cannot remember the White House be inhuman to this extent… a bunch of people who know nothing. You see this country’s secretary of state seems he does not know the ABC of politics,” Rouhani pointed out as he was speaking to his cabinet members.

He added, “The United States has always acted against the independent and oppressed nations. In this pandemic, it causes problems for importing medicine.”

Foreign Minister Zarif has said the U.S. economic terrorism against Iran has expanded to “medical terror”.


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