Russia accuses US of blocking Iran coronavirus efforts

Moscow says US sanctions are ‘deliberate obstruction’ to Tehran’s efforts to quell virus’ spread, ignoring Iranian regime’s own mismanagement.

MOSCOW - Russia has reported that the United States is deliberately blocking Iran's efforts to fight the coronavirus.

In a statement published on Monday, the Russian Foreign Ministry described the US sanctions imposed on Iran as "inhumane", referring to previous statements by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who accused Washington of imposing pressure on Iran, which hindered efforts to combat the virus.

Moscow held, according to channel Russia Today, Washington responsible for the spread of the virus due to its efforts, which it described as "deliberate obstruction to combat it," stressing that millions of Iranian citizens no longer have the ability to buy the necessary medicines.

Russia added that "American inhumane policies raise great regret and deep concern for us.”

But the Russian authorities ignore calls made by the US administration to support Tehran in confronting the virus from the start of its spread, which Iran rejected for political reasons.

Rouhani said at the time that he rejected US aid, describing it as mined, while Iranian officials made explicit accusations that America was waging a biological war against the country instead of accepting aid.

Iran also bears full responsibility for the spread of the epidemic because it did not take firm measures from the beginning, by imposing isolation on the city of Qom, the epidemic centre and yielding to the pressure of strict religious pressure, then placing the blame on US sanctions for a  deteriorating health infrastructure ignoring the reckless policies of the Iranian regime.

Despite all of these failures, Moscow praised Tehran's stance in confronting the virus and also valued its stance on adhering to the nuclear agreement, stressing its determination to "preserve this deal and prepare to continue efforts to restore the lost balance of interests."

Russia called on the United States to immediately lift its sanctions on Iran, noting that "the time of the global epidemic is not appropriate for settling geopolitical calculations, especially since they are baseless, but contrived by Washington in order to meet its ambitions."

But Russia’s talk of settling political scores neglects what the Iranian authorities caused in spreading the virus in neighbouring countries in a process described as planned and vengeful.

Where the Bahraini authorities accused Iran of launching a biological aggression by covering up the spread of the coronavirus and not stamping the passports of Bahraini travellers, which was also repeated in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

On the other hand, countries neighbouring Iran have sought to give precedence to human values ​​along the lines of the United Arab Emirates, which represented a transit bridge for international aid to Iran as part of efforts to confront the epidemic.

The Iranian authorities announced 129 deaths on Monday, bringing the total death toll to 853 deaths from about 15,000 cases of the virus since February 19, when the government announced the first cases of COVID-19.