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Human Rights or Breaking Iran Nuclear Deal

Vassily Alekseevich Nebenzia, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN, addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East (Syria). 29 November 2017 United Nations, New York UN photo by Nik Bajornas

US ambassador Nikki Haley talking on Iran at the UN Security Council (5 January 2018 UN Photo Evan Schneider)

Rex W. Tillerson, Secretary of State of the United States of America, speaks to journalists after the Council’s meeting on non-proliferation by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). 15 December 2017 United Nations, New York (UN photo by Mark Garten)

The Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2231 (2015), following the historic agreement in Vienna last week between the E3+3 (France, Germany and the United Kingdom, as well as the European Union; plus China, Russia and the United States) on one hand, and Iran, on the other, on a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) regarding Iran’s nuclear programme. The resolution establishes procedures that will facilitate the agreement’s implementation and provides for the eventual removal of all nuclear-related sanctions against Iran. Gholamali Khoshroo (centre), Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic Iran to the UN, at the Security Council meeting. 20 July 2015 (UN photo by Loey Felipe)

 

Iran's president Hassan Rohani (TV image courtesy photo for edu. only CNN)

Iran’s president Hassan Rohani (TV image courtesy photo for edu. only CNN)

By Erol Avdovic – UNITED NATIONS – Facing the Trump Administration decision weather by January 12 will re-certify UN brokered Iranian nuclear deal the UN Security Council meeting was convened at the request of the Americans to discuss anti-government unrest in Iran. It was the highest diplomatic UN gathering aimed to galvanize international criticism of Teheran’s clash with the protestors, but so far there is no one voice international declaration on the issue.

Russia said the meeting was needless and not called for the purpose of the solidarity with the Iranian people at the streets. Moscow claimed the United States is “abusing the platform of the Security Council”, and that Iran should deal with its own problems.

 

Russia disagree

 

US Permanent Representative to the United Nations, ambassador Nikki Haley called the UN session “a matter of fundamental human rights for the Iranianpeople and a matter of international peace and security”.

Peace and security is indeed a permanent agenda for the UN Security Council. But, it is not always clear what are circumstances under which a meeting on this topic can be clearly defined.

Vassily Alekseevich Nebenzia, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN, addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East (Syria). 29 November 2017 United Nations, New York UN photo by Nik Bajornas

Vassily Alekseevich Nebenzia, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN, addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East (Syria). 29 November 2017 UN photo by Nik Bajornas

The permanent envoy of the Russian Federation to the United Nations, ambassador Vassily Nebenzia, said reasoning for UN Security Council meeting was entirely to seek support for breaking the Nuclear deal signed by Teheran under the auspices of the UN in 2015. It was not about regional stability or treats to peace, he suggested.

“The real reason for convening today is not protect human rights or promote the interests of the Iranian people, but rather a veiled attempt to continue to undermine the Iran nuclear agreement,” Nebenzia said.

Except the US, Iran deal still enjoy the backing of other Western powers and four out of P-5 (Permanent Five) members of UNSC – US, UK, France, Russia and China.

Some other diplomats at the United Nations also opined – the protests in Iran did not require a meeting at the UN Security Council. However, they still gave in before US diplomatic pressure.

French UN’s ambassador Francois Delattre told Security Council the events of the last in Iran “may be they do not constitute per se a threat to international peace and security.”

British ambassador Matthew Rycroft agreed with his US colleague Nikki Haley by saying it was right and proper – to assess whether Iran protests could become a threat to international peace and security.

Ambassador Halley insisted the Iranians delivered “undeniable message” to the government in Teheran to stop support for terrorism and giving billions to “killers and dictators” which contribute largely to the jeopardized a fragile region.

 

Iran has to change

 

US ambassador Nikki Haley talking on Iran at the UN Security Council (5 January 2018 UN Photo Evan Schneider)

US ambassador Nikki Haley talking on Iran at the UN Security Council (5 January 2018 UN Photo Evan Schneider)

The Americans were not the only ones who spoke of the necessary social and other reforms in Iran, ruled by absolute power of theocrats, but US chief UN diplomat was the loudest at the Security Council.

“Let there be no doubt whatsoever: the United States stands unapologetically with those in Iran who seek freedom for themselves, prosperity for their families, and dignity for their nation,” US ambassador Haley told Security Council – adding government in Washington will not be quiet on Iran.

According to Trump Administration view the latest civil unrest in Iran is due to taking Iranian people’s wealth and spending it on foreign fighters and proxy wars in Yemen, Syria and Lebanon.

Haley said Iranians are “acting of their own will, on their own behalf, for their own future,” and that nothing will stop Americans “from standing in solidarity with them.” She warned the “Iranian regime is now on notice.”  And, that the world will be watching what they do.

“Once again, the people of Iran are rising up. They are asking for something that no government can legitimately deny them: their human rights and fundamental freedoms,” US ambassador to UN said.

 

Cautious Europeans

 

On the other side Russian UN’s ambassador Nebenzia kept insisting – US narrative was all about breaking Iran nuclear deal. He and some other diplomats echoed the warning of the French ambassador Delattre – who said Iranian domestic issues must be dealt by Iranians not by intervention from outside.

“We must be wary of any attempts to exploit this crisis for personal ends, which would have the diametrically opposed outcome to that which is wished,” French ambassador said at the UN.

US president Donald Trump didn’t brake or renew the deal last October (2017), when he also had chance to do so but seems to have dropped under pressure mainly from European metropolises. Europeans reiterated the Iranian nuclear deal is solid and even robust, according to the statement of French President Emmanuel Macron given at the UN General Assembly last September (2017).

On contrary, president Trump has called the Iran nuclear agreement “the worst deal ever.” He promised he will do everything in his power to cancel the deal as soon as he can.

Iran deal is a complex agreement put in broad terms for the restriction of nuclear activities and the enrichment of uranium in exchange for lifting of sanctions against Iran if Tehran indeed curb its nuclear program. The deal was signed in 2015 between Tehran and six world powers – US, China, Russia, UK, France and Germany.

Rex W. Tillerson, Secretary of State of the United States of America, speaks to journalists after the Council’s meeting on non-proliferation by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). 15 December 2017 United Nations, New York (UN photo by Mark Garten)

Rex W. Tillerson, Secretary of State of the United States of America, speaks to journalists after the Council’s meeting on non-proliferation by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). 15 December 2017
(UN photo by Mark Garten)

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Washington has a plan “to fix” the Iran nuclear deal but did not confirm weather Trump Administration has a time framework to do so, and weather it erase the deal totally or will try change the agreement to better fit Trump Administration domestic political agenda.

“The president said he is either going to fix it or cancel it,” Tillerson told the Associated Press. He was also quoted by other news agencies saying Americans are “in the process of trying to deliver on the promise” Trump has maid in his presidential campaign in 2016.

American law codifying US participation in the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, has to be changed in order the agreement to be scraped or modified. It could come immediately after US administration officials finish negotiation with the Congress legislators, as US Secretary of State told press.

 

UN confirms Iran obey

 

But Iran is also reconsidering its cooperation with the UN nuclear watchdog International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), if Washington indeed override the 2015 nuclear deal.

According to the Iranian state news agency (Fars) Iranian nuclear chief Ali Akbar Salehi has warned IAEA director general, Yukiya Amano –  should US does not meet its commitment in the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action), “the Islamic Republic of Iran would take decisions that might affect its current cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency.”

So far the IAEA has several times reaffirmed Iran’s full compliance with the UN nuclear agreement, saying Tehran has not been enriching uranium above the prescribed levels. The IAEA also confirmed their inspectors never experienced stopping in inspecting pointed nuclear sites inside Iran.

Regardless of the latest demonstrations in Iran, the nuclear deal should

The Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2231 (2015), following the historic agreement in Vienna last week between the E3+3 (France, Germany and the United Kingdom, as well as the European Union; plus China, Russia and the United States) on one hand, and Iran, on the other, on a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) regarding Iran’s nuclear programme. The resolution establishes procedures that will facilitate the agreement’s implementation and provides for the eventual removal of all nuclear-related sanctions against Iran. Gholamali Khoshroo (centre), Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic Iran to the UN, at the Security Council meeting. 20 July 2015 (UN photo by Loey Felipe)

The Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2231 (2015), following the historic agreement in Vienna last week between the E3+3 (France, Germany and the United Kingdom, as well as the European Union; plus China, Russia and the United States) on one hand, and Iran, on the other, on a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) regarding Iran’s nuclear programme. The resolution establishes procedures that will facilitate the agreement’s implementation and provides for the eventual removal of all nuclear-related sanctions against Iran. Gholamali Khoshroo (centre), Permanent Representative oIran to the UN, at the Security Council meeting. 20 July 2015 (UN photo by Loey Felipe)

certainly be preserved for the benefit of the entire Middle East, UN diplomats share their rather dominating sentiment in New York.

For many, the Iran deal is still considered a “historic” achievement, concluded in Vienna on 14 July 2015, (and in New York, UN Security Council on July 20 – 2015).  Teheran then reaffirmed it will “under no circumstances ever seek, develop or acquire any nuclear weapons”. And that is the line that everybody should respect.

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