December 10, 2023

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World Council of Churches urges U.S. to end Iran sanctions amid COVID-19

TEHRAN – With the growing coronavirus pandemic, the World Council of Churches has called on the U.S. to end illegal and inhuman sanctions against Iran.

In a letter to U.S. President Donald Trump published on April 9, the council wrote that “The novel coronavirus is a common enemy of humanity everywhere. An effective response to the pandemic demands an unprecedented degree of global solidarity and cooperation, special care for the most vulnerable, and swift action to mitigate the conditions which create additional vulnerability.”

The religious leaders share a deep concern for the impact on the people of Iran of the sanctions imposed by the United States. “Iran, currently with over 67,000 confirmed cases and more than 4,000 documented deaths due to COVID-19, is by far the most affected country in the Eastern Mediterranean region, and one of the most affected countries in the world,” according to the letter. 

“But its public health response is severely impeded by the strict sanctions regime imposed on the country unilaterally by the United States since May 2019, resulting in an almost total economic blockade.”

“Now is not the moment for pursuing grievances belonging to the politics of the world before COVID-19,” the letter reads. “Now is the moment for international solidarity and cooperation in controlling the spread of the virus, protecting the most vulnerable, and defeating this common enemy.”

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