Anti-Iran sanctions 'crime committed against humanity': Envoy

TEHRAN, Feb. 15 (MNA) – Iran’s Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations Zahra Ershadi described the unilateral sanctions imposed by the United States against Iranian people as ‘crime committed against humanity’.

Addressing the annual meeting of the United Nations Commission for Social Development on Friday, she said, "As Iranian President Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi stated in his address to the UNGA session, imposing unilateral sanctions against Iranian people, particularly sanctions on medicine and humanitarian items, are criminal acts on par with crimes committed against humanity. Those who sanction countries should not go unpunished for such heinous crimes."

Islamic Republic of Iran highlights the importance of national development policies and strategies as an appropriate platform for addressing the national priorities and requirements of Member States, she added.

"In this connection, Iran is implementing its '6th Five-year National Development Plan' through the reinforcement of a knowledge-based economy together with the development of advanced technology among a wide variety of subjects.”

"Further, a strong legal and legislative framework has been created that provides a solid platform for planning, implementing and following-up with national development strategies and policies, particularly regarding poverty eradication," she noted.

"Significant achievements have been made so far despite the external challenges ranging from unlawful unilateral coercive measures (UCMs) including sanctions and the COVID-19 pandemic," she stated.

"Under the current circumstances, Iranian government has provided special financial packages as well as social and economic rehabilitation plans for poor and people in vulnerable situation along with economic support measures, especially for small businesses," the Iranian diplomat said.

"In the meantime, treatment programs have been provided for around 4 million legal and illegal Afghan refugees," Ershadi added.

She went on to say, "The United Nations system and its specialized agencies can play an important role in exchanging countries' successful experiences in implementing post- COVID economic and social rehabilitation projects, as well as mobilizing international financial resources to achieve the desired national goals in the post- COVID era."

"The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the daily life of every single person. Women, children, the elderly, medical personnel, refugees, migrants and those suffering from chronic and rare diseases are the most affected," she noted.

"In fact, the pandemic has made the negative humanitarian effects of unilateral sanctions far more obvious and more disastrous," the diplomat stressed.

"The illegal sanctions have hampered access of vulnerable segments of the society in affected countries, including my country, to basic medical items and requirements extremely difficult, thus endangering the lives and health of those citizens," Ershadi said.

"Medicines, medical supplies and health commodities have been targeted through tight restrictions of foreign exchange resources, even for these humanitarian items," she added.

"These illegal actions have directly impacted the lives of Iran's most vulnerable citizens, including women, children and patients," she noted.

"What is further distressing is the reality that many children have lost their lives as a result of imposition of US sanctions on Iranian people," Ershadi said.

"Those who sanction countries should not go unpunished for such heinous crimes," the Iranian diplomat said.

"The deteriorating economic situation as a result of illegal sanctions severely affects the exercise of economic and labor rights which, in the long run, will increase poverty and impede the achievement of sustainable development goals," she noted.

"As the representative of a country whose people are subjected to the most brutal form of economic terrorism and illegitimate unilateral coercive measures by the United States, I call for the complete and immediate lifting of all unilateral coercive measures including sanctions in order to ensure the full achievement of economic and social development and enable the targeted countries to repair their economies while guaranteeing the well-being of their people in the aftermath of the pandemic," Ershadi said.

MA/IRN84651596

News Code 183939

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