UN: Sanctions against Iran, Cuba and Venezuela violate human rights

A United Nations expert warns that U.S. sanctions on Iran, Cuba and Venezuela could cause a huge humanitarian catastrophe.

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and International Sanctions, Idriss Jazairy, expressed on Monday his great concern about the recent imposition of U.S. sanctions on Iran, Cuba and Venezuela.

According to Jazairy, “the use of economic sanctions for political purposes violates human rights and international norms of behavior,” since, he has continued, “they can precipitate humanitarian catastrophes of enormous proportions.

The expert has indicated that political discrepancies between governments “should never be resolved by inducing economic and humanitarian disasters,” given that they will make people “hostages of the situation,” he added.

Referring to the recent U.S. decision to end exemptions for eight countries to continue buying Iranian oil, Jazairy said it was “very worrying” that Washington would use its power to harm not only the people of Iran, whose government “has fulfilled its obligations” under the nuclear agreement, but also anyone who trades with the Persian country.
Furthermore, regarding the tightening of Washington’s embargo on Havana, the UN rapporteur has said that the US, by activating Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, has ignored protests from the European Union (EU) and Canada and has directly attacked companies with investments on the island.

Title III of the law authorizes Cuban exiles in the U.S. and U.S. companies to sue those who benefited from the nationalizations made after the victory of the Cuban Revolution in 1959.

On the other hand, he has alluded to the latest punitive measures adopted by Washington against Caracas as part of its support for the self-proclaimed “interim president” of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, head of the National Assembly (AN) – of an opposition majority and in contempt since 2016 – to carry out a coup d’état against President Nicolás Maduro.

“It is difficult to understand how measures that destroy the Venezuelan economy (…) can ‘help the Venezuelan people,’ as the U.S. Treasury Department claims,” Jazairy said.

In this regard, he has called on the international community to “engage in constructive dialogue with Venezuela, Cuba, Iran and the United States” to find a “peaceful solution in line with the United Nations Charter before the arbitrary use of starvation becomes the new normality.

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