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Ban on Iran flights to go down in history as disgraceful: Envoy

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Photo by Mehr news agency shows a nurse at a hospital in the Iranian capital Tehran where coronavirus patients are receiving care.

Iran’s ambassador to France Bahram Qassemi has lambasted certain European governments for imposing restrictions on Iranian flights into the continent, saying the move would go down in history as shameful given that Iran is currently fighting a serious epidemic almost on its own.

Qassemi wrote on the Twitter account of the Iranian Embassy in France that instead of helping Iran, certain governments in Europe have decided to follow the United States and pile more pressure on Iran.

The envoy said it was a historic disgrace that Iran, a country already grappling with harsh US sanctions, is being denied of help in its fight against coronavirus.

“Instead of understanding the situation and helping the Iranians, some people, willingly or unwillingly and through vague excuses and in line with America’s maximum pressure, are adding to these pressures,” read part of Qassemi's statement.

“Let’s avoid getting shamed by history,” he said.

The envoy was referring to recent restrictions imposed on Iran’s flag carrier Homa forcing the airline to suspend all its flights to European destinations.

Homa announced on Sunday that it was trying to find a way out of the “unknown restrictions” imposed by European authorities.

That comes as Iran has dismissed claims that banning flights to Europe was related to the outbreak of coronavirus in the country.

For the past two years, the United States has been trying to persuade European governments that they should stop processing flights by Iran’s Mahan Air.

That comes as Homa, known internationally as IranAir, has introduced new routes to compensate for Mahan Air’s cancelled flights to European destinations.

The recent restrictions on Homa’s flights to Europe mean that no Iranian airline is currently servicing any flights to Europe.

That leaves many Iranians stranded in European countries where the number of people infected with the new coronavirus keeps surging.   


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