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    » 08/01/2012, 00.00

    IRAN - UNITED STATES

    Thousands of Iranian children becoming collateral victims of Obama's sanctions



    The US president has tightened sanctions against anyone dealing with Iranian oil companies or helping Iran get around them. They include a Chinese and an Iraqi bank. Thousands of children suffering from haemophilia are at risk because of the embargo on financial transactions. Businesses are also becoming collateral victims.

    Tehran (AsiaNews) - US President Barack Obama has ordered new economic sanctions against Iran's energy and financial sector. However, this is having a major impact on the population as drugs for children become scarce.

    Since the start of the year, the US administration has imposed new sanctions against Iranian oil exports (one of the country's remaining products) and financial transactions to stop Tehran's nuclear programme, which it deems a threat. The European Union followed suit in July.

    The Iranian government has always denied that its programme is military in nature. To bypass the sanctions, it has tried to diversify the way it gets paid for oil sales, using gold and barter.

    The new measures are against firms that have dealings with the National Iranian Oil Company, the Naftiran Intertrade Company or the Central Bank of Iran, or that help Iran buy US dollars or precious metals.

    The new sanctions have thus targeted China's Bank of Kunlun and Iraq's Elaf Islamic Bank as institutions that Washington says have helped Iran evade sanctions.

    However, the battle between the United States (and the European Union) and Iran is causing many collateral victims, including thousands of children who suffer from haemophilia who no longer have access to life-saving drugs.

    The Iranian Haemophilia Society has informed the World Federation of Haemophilia that the lives of tens of thousands of children are being endangered by the lack of proper drugs, a consequence of international economic sanctions imposed on the Islamic Republic.

    Although the export of drugs to Iran has not been banned, sanctions on the country's financial institutions have severely disrupted the purchase and transfer of medical goods.

    Iranian businesses, big or small, are another group that has become the collateral victims of sanctions since they cannot trade with foreign countries.

    Sources told AsiaNews that some firms are shutting down whilst others are barely surviving because they cannot buy and sell abroad.

    "We don't know where all this will lead," one businessman said. "What is certain is that it is impossible to live."

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    See also

    21/03/2009 IRAN - UNITED STATES
    Iran, Khamenei dictates conditions for dialogue with Obama
    The Iranian spiritual leader asks for changes in U.S. policy before opening diplomatic channels. The lifting of sanctions and unfreezing of assets are the first concrete steps. Khamenei's apparent closure is intended to prevent divisions inside the country.

    25/10/2007 IRAN – UNITED STATES
    US sanctions against Iran’s Revolutionary Guards for terrorist and economic activities
    The 100,000 strong paramilitary force trains and arms Iraqi insurgents and manages large scale infrastructural projects in Iran.

    22/04/2010 IRAN – UNITED STATES – CHINA
    Beijing trying to “water down” sanctions against Tehran
    China has proposed amendments to US-drafted sanctions. The mainland is Iran’s biggest trading partner, and depends on its energy supplies. The United States does not exclude the military option. Turkey offers to mediate.

    29/12/2015 IRAN - UNITED STATES
    Tehran sends Russia 11 tons of enriched uranium
    The US Secretary of State John Kerry confirms Irans commitments. Time needed to produce atomic power grows from three to nine months; close to 'breakout time' set by international powers.

    03/08/2005 IRAN
    As he is endorsed President, Ahmadinejad calls for the suppression of weapons of mass destruction
    "I hope to remove the seals and resume activities [in the Isfahan facilities] today," says Iran's National Security Council spokesman Ali Agha Mohammadi.



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