Havaar activists have organized a campaign to help Iranians get access to lifesaving drugs during the growing medical shortage brought on by the intensification of international sanctions.

Havaar, which describes itself as “a grassroots group of Iranians, Iranian-Americans and allies who have joined together to categorically oppose any military action and the U.S.-led sanctions against Iran”, challenges the notion that sanctions are a humane alternative to war, emphasizing that the sanctions on Iran’s financial institutions have resulted in a medical crisis in Iran and restricted people’s access to vital goods.

Havaar explains while the U.S. has officially exempted transactions relating to medicine and medical supplies, few banks are willing to have any dealings with Iran for fear of crossing the lines drawn by the United States to isolate Iran.

Havaar claims that medical drug shortages have already caused deaths among those suffering from severe diseases such as cancer, hemophilia and multiple sclerosis, and the number is growing.

The campaign warns that “rather than being an alternative to war, sanctions wreak havoc on the life chances of entire populations and are often used to pave the way for military intervention, as our brothers and sisters in Iraq have experienced firsthand.”

The group urges individuals and organizations to sign its petition addressed to major banks, calling it a first step in the campaign against the policy of sanctioning Iran.