Spokesperson Warns of Human Catastrophe in Yemen

Spokesperson Warns of Human Catastrophe in YemenSpokesperson Warns of Human Catastrophe in Yemen

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham called on the international community to pay "special attention" to the situation in Yemen and take action to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe from happening in the crisis-hit Arab country.  

Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, Afkham expressed  concern over the continuation of Saudi airstrikes on Yemen, saying the Islamic Republic had denounced the attacks since the very beginning of the assault.

"Unfortunately, we are witnessing that 40 days have passed since the start of the Arab coalition's military attacks against Yemen; many people have been either killed or injured, and the main infrastructures of the country have been destroyed," she said. Warning of a "humanitarian catastrophe" which is about to happen in Yemen, she said the Saudi-imposed blockade on its neighboring country has placed "severe restrictions" on the Yemeni people and prevented them from meeting their basic needs such as access to power, water, foodstuff and medicine.

"Iran is continuing talks and consultations (with the relevant international bodies) to help resolve the Yemeni crisis and dispatch humanitarian aid to the war-hit country," she noted.

Condemning the "inhuman move" by Saudi Arabia to bomb Sana'a airport and its blocking of the delivery of relief aid to the Yemeni people, she said Iran is trying to provide Yemen with humanitarian assistance as soon as possible in cooperation with international bodies such as the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).  

Asked about the Islamic Republic's stance on international efforts to solve the crisis in Syria, Afkham said from the outset Iran has urged political solutions to the Syrian crisis. She also said Iran had submitted a proposal on the Syrian issue to UN envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura who was appointed in 2014 by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.  "Iran recognizes the right of the Syrian nation to determine their own fate and insists on (holding) political discussions as the main solution to the crisis in Syria,"  she noted.  

  Saudi Perception

Elsewhere, the spokeswoman criticized Riyadh's insistence on the wrong perception that Iran poses a threat to the region. "It is a pity that for more than three decades such a wrong perception has formed the basis of Saudi Arabia's judgments."

Saudi Arabia's wrong judgment, according to Afkham, has impeded the establishment of a mechanism to promote regional cooperation, undermining regional peace and stability. She hoped authorities in Saudi Arabia will abandon their unfair negative view toward the Islamic Republic.

She also lamented the fact that some countries interfere in the region, saying the same powers are the main cause of instability and insecurity in the region as well as dissentions and divergence among regional states. In addition, the spokesperson said uranium enrichment inside the borders of the country, as an inalienable right of the nation, "will not stop at any price."

"The US propaganda campaign will not affect the determination of the negotiating team to safeguard the Iranian nation's rights," she noted.  Emphasizing that Iran stands up to excessive demands, the official said Tehran's positions on such issues as the lifting of sanctions, the verification process and inspections by the UN nuclear watchdog have been made clear in talks with its international negotiating partners.