180,000 organ transplant packages imported to Iran: Swiss envoy

TEHRAN, Feb. 02 (MNA) – Swiss Ambassador to the Islamic Republic of Iran Markus Leitner announced on Sunday that some 18,000 medical packages for organ transplantation have been imported to Iran.

In a press conference held at the plcae of the Swiss embassy in Tehran on Sunday, he told reporters that the newly established humanitarian channel for the delivery of foodstuff and medicine to Iran is a more of a political sign rather than a humanitarian tool.

"But we consider the move as a sign for reducing tensions," the ambassador added.

"We have made some investments on this mechanism and want to be assured that the traded goods will be in hands of the Iranian consumers," he said.

"I expect the channel to become fully operational within the next two or three weeks," Leitner added.

He informed that by the present time three payments have been done by banks in Swiss, at the value of 2.3 million euro, to supply various types of medicine from Swiss companies for Iranians.

Trial operation of a humanitarian channel for the delivery of foodstuff and medicine to Iran, which does not trip over the US sanctions, was done last Thursday.

Reacting to the issue, the Governor of the Central bank of Iran (CBI) said on Friday "If Americans really mean it when they say they are helping with the supply of medicine and agricultural goods, they must establish a banking mechanism for transfer and supply of financial resources required for purchase of the basic goods."

"Some 2.5 million worth of medicine have been exchanged on demand of Swiss embassy," he said, "The financial resource for the job has been provided from CBI's assets in a Swiss bank and via Swiss companies."

The US Special Representative Brian Hook told a press briefing on Thursday that three shipments of cancer and transplant drugs have been sent to Iran through this channel and the transaction has been processed. He added that more companies were interested in using the channel and there were likely to be more similar transactions. “It’s the first one. There will be more to come.”

As reported, the Swiss Humanitarian Trade Arrangement (SHTA) seeks to ensure that Swiss-based exporters and trading companies in the food, pharmaceutical and medical sectors have a secure payment channel with a Swiss bank through which payments for their exports to Iran are guaranteed.

MNA/

News Code 155203

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