US Continues to Block Transfer of Medicines to Iran: VP

Iranian First Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri said the US sanctions have prevented the shipment of medicines and basic items to Iran amid the coronavirus pandemic in the country

The US blocks the transfer of money, medicines and basic commodities to Iran by imposing oil, banking, insurance and transportation sanctions on the Islamic Republic, Jahangiri said on Saturday addressing a meeting with managers and physicians of a headquarters tasked with battling the coronavirus in Tehran, Press TV reported.

He added that Iran needs an annual budget of up to three billion dollars to supply required medicines and some 14 billion dollars for basic commodities.

Despite facing certain problems and unlike many countries, Iran has provided adequate goods for its people, the vice president said.

Kianoush Jahanpoor, the head of public relations and information center of the Iranian Ministry of Health, said on Saturday that 35,408 individuals have been confirmed to be infected with the disease, 2,517 of whom have lost their lives. As many as 11,679 individuals have also recovered from the virus.

"The condition of 3,026 of those hospitalized is critical in one way or another," he said, adding that 57 million Iranians had been screened for the virus.

While the US administration claims there are no sanctions on medicine going to Iran, many banks and companies have refrained from taking part in any such ventures out of fear of getting caught up in US secondary sanctions.

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