Iran’s central bank says it has received support from the United States to transfer money to a Swiss account to pay for the vaccines.
Iran has obtained US approval to transfer funds for coronavirus vaccines from overseas, the central bank chief said, as its daily death toll fell to an all-time low. three months.
Central Bank Governor Abdolnaser Hemmati said an Iranian bank had received support from the US Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control to transfer the money to a Swiss bank to pay for the vaccines.
“They [Americans] imposed sanctions on all of our banks. They accepted this case under the pressure of world public opinion, ”Hemmati told state television.
There was no immediate reaction from the United States to Hemmati’s remarks.
Hemmati said Iran would pay nearly $ 244 million for the initial imports of 16.8 million doses of vaccine from COVAX, a multi-agency group dedicated to ensuring equitable access to vaccines for low-income countries and intermediate.
Iranian officials have repeatedly said that US sanctions prevent them from making payments to COVAX, to which some 190 economies have signed up.
Iran’s Shifa Pharmed began registering volunteers this week for human trials of the country’s first COVID-19 vaccine candidate, Iranian media reported, as a factional dispute appeared to brew over the use of imports.
“We do not recommend injecting foreign coronavirus vaccines to the personnel of the Revolutionary Guards and Basij [voluntary militia]”Mohammed Reza Naqdi, deputy head of the Radical Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps,” said Iranian media.
Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari earlier told state television that 152 people had died from COVID-19 in Iran in the past 24 hours, the lowest number since 18 September, bringing the total number of deaths to 54,308 in the worst-affected country in the Middle East.
The drop in deaths comes after more than a month of nighttime curfews and other restrictions in major cities. Police said 96,000 fines were passed nationwide on Wednesday for drivers breaking the curfew.
Officials have warned that the danger of a resurgence of infections is great.
US President Donald Trump withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers in 2018 and imposed new sanctions on the country.
President-elect Joe Biden’s coming to power raised the possibility that Washington could join the deal.