Damascus (ANN)-Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says the ongoing global crisis caused by the novel coronavirus pandemic has exposed Western countries’ failure and immorality.

“The coronavirus crisis has exposed the failure of the Western regimes as well as their immorality, because the pandemic showed that these regimes only serve a select few of individuals with vested interests, instead of serving their people,” Syria’s president said in a meeting with Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and his accompanying delegation in Damascus on Monday.

The Syrian president also offered his condolences to the Iranian government and people over the loss of lives caused by the deadly coronavirus, Syria’s official news agency SANA reported.

He lashed out at certain Western counties, mainly the United States, for using the pandemic as a political opportunity to impose sanctions on other states despite the current exceptional humanitarian circumstances.

The Iranian foreign minister, for his part, said the US administration’s refusal to lift sanctions on Syria and Iran has revealed its inhumane nature to the world.

“Now, the true intentions of the US with regard to its refusal to lift cruel sanctions on nations under the difficult situation of fighting against this disease has been revealed,” Zarif said.

Iran has been doing its utmost to contain COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new coronavirus, despite the hardships caused by Washington’s cruel sanctions.

Tehran has repeatedly said it does not seek Washington’s help in the fight, but wants it to lift its illegal economic sanctions so that Iran could mobilize its own resources to tackle the pandemic.

The administration of US President Donald Trump has not only defied international calls on Washington in recent weeks to halt its draconian sanctions on Tehran, but has even slapped more such restrictive measures on the Islamic Republic.

Washington re-imposed its sanctions on Iran in May 2018 after unilaterally leaving a historic UN-endorsed nuclear accord with Tehran and five other major powers — the UK, France, Russia and China plus Germany.

In a Sunday post on Twitter, the Iranian foreign minister once again warned the US president against interfering in the internal affairs of other countries amid the new coronavirus. 

“All you need to do is stop interfering in the affairs of other nations; mine especially. And believe me, we do not take advice from ANY American politician,” Zarif said.