(Persia Digest) - Iran’s foreign minister says U.S. sanctions re-imposed by the Trump administration last year have been the major obstacle to successful rescue efforts for flood-stricken areas of Iran.

Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted late Monday that America’s “maximum pressure” policy on Iran “is impeding aid efforts by #IranianRedCrescent to all communities devastated by unprecedented floods.”

He says the sanctions have prevented Tehran from getting badly needed equipment, including relief helicopters. “This isn’t just economic warfare; it’s economic TERRORISM.”

Iran has been facing major flooding that killed 45 people. Local authorities have repeatedly asked for more helicopters to reach remote areas.

State media say the floods have struck hundreds of villages as well as towns and cities in the western half of the country. In some parts, an emergency has been declared.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Read more:

Floods Demolish 25,000 Houses Across Iran, Damage 60,000 Others

► Heavy rainfall submerges cities in northern Iran

Flash floods devastate Shiraz (photos)

Iran prepares for more floods

Source: Associated Press

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