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Tehran Says INSTEX Insufficient Enough amid Crisis

Tehran Says INSTEX Insufficient Enough amid Crisis

Tuesday, 7 April, 2020 - 08:15
In this May 28, 2019 photo, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi speaks at a press conference in Tehran, Iran (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)
Tehran - Asharq Al-Awsat

Iran has welcomed the launch of the financial mechanism known as the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX) to bypass US sanctions.

“We take the operation of INSTEX as a good omen, but this is much less than what we expect,” according to Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi.

He added that Iran also expects players in other sectors like the banking and energy sectors to meet their obligations, IRNA reported.

Last week, the first transaction was conducted by Britain, France and Germany. Mousavi stated that the transactions enabled allocating hundreds of thousands of euros to purchase medicines and medical equipment for Iran.

Iran admitted facing huge challenges in tackling the COVID-19 outbreak, knowing that it turned down a US offer to help and didn't allow Doctors Without Borders to intervene.

In this regard, the US had been urged to reduce sanctions imposed on Iran to enable it to effectively combat this outbreak.

Notably, Washington reimposed sanctions on Tehran in May of 2018 after pulling out from the nuclear deal.

In response to this withdrawal, the three European countries decided to set up INSTEX in Jan of 2019. However, the activation process was slow and this led to an exchange of accusations between Iranians and Europeans.

INSTEX functions as a clearing house that allows Iran to continue to sell oil and import other products or services in exchange.

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