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Government response
government response summary
The UK lifted economic sanctions on Iran as part of the nuclear deal. There is no evidence remaining sanctions, targeted at nuclear and human rights concerns, affect Iran’s ability to fight Covid-19.
government response details
The UK has responded rapidly to calls for assistance from Iran and the UN to tackle the coronavirus outbreak in Iran. Alongside France and Germany we have committed £2 million towards a €5 million package of support through the WHO and UN agencies. We will continue to consider carefully all requests made for further assistance in order to help Iran respond to the pandemic. Sanctions can be used to change behaviour; constrain damaging action; or send a signal of condemnation. The Government believes sanctions can be an effective and reasonable foreign policy tool if they are part of a broader foreign policy strategy, and are appropriate to the purposes they are intending to achieve.Current EU and UN sanctions (which the UK implements) against Iran are targeted at Iran’s nuclear weapons programme and at restricting Iran’s ability to develop and deliver nuclear weapons. These sanctions include an arms embargo; restrictive measures related to missile technology; restrictions on certain nuclear-related transfers and activities; an asset freeze for certain named individuals and entities and a travel ban for certain named individuals (a full list can be accessed at the link - https://ofsistorage.blob.core.windows.net/publishlive/ConList.html); and provisions concerning graphite and other semi-finished metals which are subject to an authorisation regime to address non-proliferation concerns. The Government has no plans to call for the suspension of these EU or UN sanctions on Iran as we believe these sanctions are both targeted and appropriate and have no significant impact on the ability of the Iranian authorities to respond to the coronavirus pandemic.Since January 2016 the UK has fully implemented its commitment under the Iran nuclear deal – the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPoA) – to suspend EU economic sanctions on Iran; and its obligation under UN Security Council Resolution 2231 to lift certain UN sanctions. Sanctions suspended under the deal include those on the financial system and banks and restrictive measures on Iran’s oil, gas and petrochemical sectors. The nuclear deal was designed to ensure the exclusively peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme and includes the eventual lifting of sanctions related to Iran's nuclear programme in return for monitored, verified implementation of nuclear-related measures by Iran.Separate to sanctions in place under the nuclear deal, there is an EU Iran human rights sanctions regime. It consists of asset freezes and travel bans on certain individuals and entities involved in human rights violations; and trade restrictions on specified goods and technology which may be used to repress the civilian population of Iran and on specified goods and technology which may be used for interception and monitoring services in Iran. Again, we believe these sanctions are targeted; do not believe they have a significant impact on Iran’s ability to respond to COVID-19; and given the gravity of the human rights situation in Iran are appropriate to address the ongoing serious human rights violations taking place in contravention of Iran’s international human rights obligations. Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
government response created at
2020-03-30T11:57:03.559000+00:00
government response updated at
2020-03-30T11:57:03.559000+00:00
government response has e-petition
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e-petition has government response
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