Brian Hook, U.S. Special Representative for Iran and Senior Policy Advisor to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, has said several times that food and medicine have never been part of the sanctions.
Saeid Namaki, Iran’s Minister of Health, has said this in Lamard: “Shortage of medicine has decreased one third compared to last year. Our pharmaceutical companies provide 97% of our domestic needs and export to 50 countries.”
Again, Namaki said this about Food&Drug Administration which operates under his purview: “Some people in this ministry have used government budget and dollars to import other things like electrical cables instead of medicine. They have imported expired medicine into the country.”
On the other hand, Brian Hook claimed that Iran uses the money allocated for medicine on other things, before Namaki said that.
How is it that you can EXPORT to 50 countries but can’t import what you need? Or 3% shortage is so much that has become the main point of your propaganda? Or where is the money allocated for medicinal imports?
On Feb 4, 2020 Swiss Ambassador in Tehran opened a humanitarian channel and gave the Iran’s government 1800 boxes of cancer and transplant medicines. Iran’s response? Foreign Ministry Spokesman, Abbas Mousavi, said this in his press conference: ” We do not recognize sanctions [for that matter]. Medicine and foodstuffs were never subject to sanctions in the first place so they can now create a channel [for their transfer] with much publicity,” calling this a publicity stunt by the US and Switzerland.
Still, Iran’s newspapers and officials point their fingers at “medicine sanctions”. They can’t keep their story straight. Javad Zarif, Foreign Minister of IR, keeps mentioning this at almost every single interview he’s had, hoping the majority of people don’t know the truth.
This page from US Department of Treasury shows sanction exempts, the timeline and all necessary information for whomever seeking the truth.