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Medical terrorism of US, allies continues to take toll on Iranian EB patients

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)
File photo shows a child suffering from the rare but fatal skin disease known as epidermolysis bullosa (EB). (Photo by IRNA)

A Paris-based intergovernmental organization has scandalously turned down a petition against a Swedish pharma company lodged on behalf of Iranians who suffer from a potentially fatal skin disease.

The petition was submitted earlier this year by the lawyer, who represents the patients afflicted with epidermolysis bullosa (EB), a type of disease that causes fragile, blistering skin.

The US sanctions against Iran have been choking up the financial channels that could be used towards providing the Islamic Republic with the cure for EB sufferers and other direly-needed medical supplies.

Washington reinstated the cruel economic sanctions after unilaterally abandoning the 2015 deal between the Islamic Republic and world powers.

The petition had protested the submission of Mölnlycke, a Sweden-headquartered internationally active supplier of medical devices, to the sanctions, which has caused the company to withhold the bandages that are needed by those suffering from the skin condition.

The petition was turned down by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), of which Sweden is a member, Iranian media outlets reported on Wednesday.

It was tossed out by OECD’s National Contact Point, a mechanism in the member states that supervises multinational enterprises that are headquartered in those states.

Last month, Iranian ambassador to Sweden said Swedish pharmaceutical company keeps halting the supply of special bandages needed to treat Iranian patients suffering from a special skin condition as it continues to comply with American sanctions on Iran.

Ahmad Ma’soumifar said that Iranian children suffering from EB have been through endless pain or have died because they have no access to the bandages needed to treat their genetic condition.

“Is this not a blatant violation of the rights of children and a crime against humanity?” Ma’soumifar wrote on his Twitter page.

The ambassador did not elaborate on the name of the Swedish company. However, previous reports and statements by Iranian officials suggest it is Mölnlycke, an internationally active supplier of medical devices with trade interests in the United States.

The minors, who are afflicted with the disease, are often known as butterfly children since their skin is as fragile as the wings of a butterfly. Even mild frictions or bumps could cause severe blistering of the skin.

There are hundreds of EB patients suffering from the disease in Iran. So far, more than a dozen Iranians have died of the disease in the absence of the needed medical supplies.

Many of those suffering from the disease have lost their lives due to a lack of essential medical equipment while others have suffered due to severe physical injuries, including amputation.

As one harrowing example, an Iranian girl Ava succumbed to this illness in 2019.

After her tragic death, a Malaysian human rights organization said Ava and other butterfly children's deaths due to US sanctions on Iran amounted to "death to humanity", calling for an end to the world's silence about the "economic genocide" against Iranians.

It described Ava's story as a heart-wrenching case of a pure innocent baby who was deprived of the medical care she needed.

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