Skip to content
Media coverage | 23 April 2020

ELN group statement mentioned in Newsweek

The ELN’s joint statement with The Iran Project has been mentioned in Newsweek:

On Monday, two dozen former U.S. and European officials also urged the Trump administration to adopt “targeted sanctions relief” in a statement organized by the European Leadership Network and The Iran Project.

Signatories included former Secretary of State and U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Madeleine Albright, former Swedish Foreign Minister and Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency Hans Blix and former NATO Secretary-General and Belgian Foreign Minister Willy Claes.

Immediate measures recommended by the group of national security leaders involved supplying the resources necessary to fight the coronavirus outbreak. Others included bolstering staffing and other resources at the Office of Foreign Assets Control to expedite licensing, issuing comfort letters to banks and companies concerned about conducting transactions with Iranian entities, offering regular updates on the Swiss Humanitarian Trade Arrangement (SHTA) and supporting humanitarian trade through the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX).

The experts also recommended the U.S. make clear that countries granted exemptions to buy oil from Iran could use that money for humanitarian exports there, that Washington provides funding to the World Health Organization to assist Iran and that the Trump administration not interfere in the International Monetary Fund’s debate on whether to grant Tehran’s request for a $5 billion emergency financing.

One signatory, former U.S. Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs and ambassador to six different nations, Thomas Pickering, affirmed Monday during a press call: “There is no reason at this stage why the sanctions effort should interfere in a malign way with the people of Iran seeking to improve their health and deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, and there is every reason in our view to support these particular approaches.”