May 15, 2020, 8:12 PM
Journalist ID: 2377
News Code: 83788428
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UN rights chief urges lifting, suspending anti-Iran sanctions

Tehran, May 15, IRNA -- UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Friday called for removing or suspending sanctions against Iran to help the country in its ongoing fight against the coronavirus.

In an interview with France 24, she urged the US to lift sanctions on Iran and Venezuela, stressing that the sanitary situation called for such a move in order to save lives.

Bachelet added that the medical exemptions to those sanctions touted by the Trump administration were too narrow and said only a suspension or a lifting of the sanctions would have a real impact.

The UN human rights chief voiced concern that some governments were taking advantage of emergency powers, lockdowns and curfews to further stifle dissent and crack down on political foes, human rights defenders and journalists.

Bachelet also warned that if Israel were to annex the West Bank, as the new government plans to do, this would be an "unacceptable" violation of international law.

She also said she was deeply worried about the worsening situation in Libya, noting that the warring parties had ignored the call for a ceasefire and admitting that the UN's efforts were unsuccessful for now.

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