Chairman of Iran's Red Crescent Society (IRCS) Karim Hemmati on Monday announced that the United States has allowed the launch of a financial channel for transfer of international humanitarian aid to Iran.
Speaking to the government news agency IRNA Hemmati said the launch of the channel was negotiated through the President of the International Committee of the Red Cross with the U.S. Department of Treasury and Diplomacy Division.
Hemmati also said a portion of the aid that had been reserved for Iran's Red Crescent Society abroad and could not be transferred to Iran due to the U.S. sanctions has now entered the country by the virtue of the waiver.
The U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control requires a special license for making charitable donations to Iran.
According to the Chairman of IRCS, the U.S. Treasury will not object to transfer of aid by individual or legal entities provided that none of the parties is American.
Iranian officials including Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif often suggest that U.S. sanctions hamper international humanitarian aid to Iran but U.S. officials have repeatedly rejected that.
Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, several countries have offered material and financial support to Iran to combat the spread of coronavirus including several shipments of pharmaceutical ingredients, test kits and medicines from Germany and South Korea but this is the first time that aid in the form of foreign exchange funds is being made available.
The Chairman of the IRCS did not disclose the amount of the transferred and expected aid but the official government news agency IRNA said the amount of the foreign exchange funds expected to be transferred to Iran in the near future is "significant".
There has been no confirmation yet of an agreement by U.S. officials.