Temporarily lift sanctions in Iran
PRESIDENT Bush has rightly offered American assistance to help Iranians deal with the aftermath of the earthquake in the stricken city of Bam. Yet in an unintended twist of international affairs, American citizens of Iranian descent are barred from providing assistance to the neediest of all the victims: the orphan children. Since 1990, our Boston-based group, Earthquake Relief Fund for Orphans, has helped to identify children orphaned by earthquakes in Iran, placed them in adoptive homes locally, and even provided them with money to start a new life when they turned 18. Every dollar we raise goes to the orphans.
Because of sanctions imposed on Iran in the '90s and enforced more stringently since Sept. 11, charities like ours are barred from sending money to Iran. We are upstanding American citizens who want to help with the children of this disaster.
When the rubble has been cleared, the disaster relief organizations will move on and the public's attention will shift, but this earthquake will leave behind several hundred orphans. President Bush can help us "leave no child behind." We call on him to lift the sanctions on a limited and temporary basis and allow us to provide assistance to the children of Bam.
Dr. MOHAMMED FARIVAR
Earthquake Relief Fund for Orphans
© Copyright 2003 Globe Newspaper Company.