Tehran is ready to provide assistance to the US to control the coronavirus spread, Iranian Deputy Health Minister Alireza Raisi announced Thursday.
"Iran is ready to help the US to control the coronavirus," he said, according to the IRNA news agency. He added that if "the US wants to help Iran, then they should remove sanctions and compensate caused losses." According to the deputy minister, "US healthcare system is not ready to curb the coronavirus [threat]."
On March 12, US President Donald Trump repeatedly offered assistance to Iran in curbing the coronavirus spread. In response, Iranian politicians, including President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, said that the US can assist by withdrawing sanctions, TASS reports.
Iranian authorities used to repeat that US restrictions against Tehran complicate the country’s fight against the disease.
On March 16, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Geng Shuang claimed that unilateral sanctions of the US against Iran amid coronavirus spread would only exacerbate the situation.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said that the US deliberately takes actions that thwart Iran’s fight against the infection.
The ongoing coronavirus outbreak was registered in central China in late December 2019. On March 11, the World Health Organization declared it a pandemic. COVID-19 infection cases have been recorded in more than 170 countries. According to the latest data, over 220,000 people have contracted the virus; about 8,900 of them have died. A total of 147 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia as yet, one person died.