A Swiss minister announced on Tuesday that Washington had expressed its readiness to speed up the pace of delivery of goods through a Swiss humanitarian mechanism, which since last year has allowed Iran to deliver goods that are not subject to US sanctions.
“This mechanism is working, but it is not being used enough,” Swiss Foreign Minister Ignacio Cassis said – in a press conference after US President Joe Biden met in Geneva with Swiss President Guy Berelman.
“We have received with satisfaction the willingness of the United States to continue supporting this mechanism for the benefit of the Iranian people,” the minister added.
The meeting of the American and Swiss delegations came ahead of an upcoming summit in Geneva between Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
It is noteworthy that the “payment mechanism for the delivery of humanitarian goods to Iran” has been operational since February 27, 2020. It was set up by Switzerland in close cooperation with the US and Iranian authorities, as well as a select group of Swiss banks and companies.
Switzerland reported that with the reimposition of US trade sanctions, Swiss exporters have faced increasing difficulties in delivering humanitarian goods to Iran, although this type of delivery is not covered in principle by US sanctions.
This payment system is intended for Swiss companies active in the food, pharmaceutical and medical sectors, and allows them to send aid to Iran.
Tehran has been subject to strict US sanctions since the United States withdrew in 2018 from the international agreement on Iran’s nuclear program.