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EghtesadOnline: The US Treasury Office for Foreign Assets Control has recently allowed opening of a financial channel for sending humanitarian aid exclusively to Iran's Red Crescent Society, head of IRCS said. The society has received aid through the channel in recent days.

"We had informed the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies about the need for a secure financial channel for IRCS to receive humanitarian assistance and donations from overseas," IRNA quoted Karim Hemmati as saying. 

American individuals and organizations are not allowed to use the channel, this was the US Treasury's only condition for authorizing the channel, Hemmati said. 

He did not provide details about the transactions through the channel. "We need to use the channel to meet urgent needs for medicine and equipment." 

Food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies are exempt from sanctions that Washington imposed last year after Donald Trump walked away from a historic 2015 agreement over Iran’s nuclear program signed by six world powers (five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany).

The US measures targeting everything from oil, banking and shipping to major pharmaceutical industries have deterred all foreign banks and multinationals from doing business with Tehran. Humanitarian deals also have been hit hard. 

In early 2020, the US Treasury granted a license to allow humanitarian trade with Iran’s sanctioned central bank through the Swiss Humanitarian Trade Arrangement.

As Iran faces serious challenges in importing medicine and agricultural products, it has condemned the hostile Trump government for making false claims about exempting humanitarian goods from the new restrictions. 

Even as humanitarian goods are not subject to sanction of any kind under international law, both the Tehran government and the Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS) have confirmed that foreign bank accounts of the IRCS, like many other state entities, have been frozen.

IRCS humanitarian aid Financial