‘Rather than allowing the US to repeat such abusive pattern, the Council should strongly condemn the US for re-imposing its illegal sanctions against Iranians in violation of the UN Charter and international law,’ Eshagh Al Habib said in his statement on ‘Non-Proliferation: implementation of Security Council resolution 2231 (2015)’ while addressing the United Nations Security Council on Wednesday.
The full text of Al Habib’s speech at the UNSC meeting is as follows:
In the Name of God, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful
I would like to begin by sincerely thanking those Council members who reaffirmed their commitments to continue supporting the JCPOA.
At a time when multilateralism is under threat, preserving the JCPOA, which according to the UNSG, is ‘a demonstration of successful multilateralism’ and a major achievement in ‘dialogue and diplomacy’ is of outmost importance.
From this perspective, we laud the call by distinguished Secretary-General, in his report, that the JCPOA participants, ‘the Council, all Member States and regional and other international actors must ensure the continuity of this agreement that is fundamental to regional and international peace and security.’
In this meeting that is held to consider the implementation of resolution 2231, the Council should, therefore, consider and address all obstacles created in its implementation, in particular, its provisions on ‘promoting and facilitating the development of normal economic and trade contacts and cooperation with Iran’.
As it is well-known, the sustainability of the JCPOA has been seriously challenged by unilateral and unlawful conduct of the United States in withdrawing from the JCPOA and re-imposing illegal sanctions against Iran.
It is a clear violation of the resolution that calls upon ‘all States without exception’, which include the United States, not only to ‘take actions as may be appropriate to support the implementation of the JCPOA’ but also to ‘refrain from actions that undermine implementation of commitments under the JCPOA.’ Therefore, the Council should consider the US illegal acts as a flagrant violation of the resolution and hold it accountable for such violations.
It is evident that any inaction or leniency in taking appropriate action to prevent the violation of resolution will only embolden the US to continue its unlawful practices and irresponsible policies.
The irony is that the US, who itself is in absolute violation of resolution 2231, today accused Iran of violating this resolution.
What we heard today was another series of lies, fabrications, disinformation and deceptive statement by the US. It is not unprecedented. Just recall infamous speeches made in the past at this very chamber by the US officials.
It is not surprising too! Deception is an inseparable part of the US foreign policy as is bullying and its addiction to sanctions and warmongering.
A clear example of such policies is the American approach towards Iran’s peaceful nuclear program on which it manufactured an unnecessary crisis and were successful in abusing this Council to impose illegal sanctions.
Nevertheless, as soon as it was ended with the conclusion of the JCPOA and the IAEA repeatedly confirmed Iran’s full compliance with its commitments, the US withdrew from the JCPOA, violated resolution 2231, re-imposed its illegal sanctions and started punishing States who abide by the resolution.
Such policies and practices clearly indicate that even in the past, they did not have any genuine concern about Iran’s nuclear program.
Now, for the first time in the UN history, a permanent member of this Council is blatantly punishing UN members not for violating rather for complying with a Security Council resolution. And yet, the US finds the audacity to highjack the Council to intensify its hostilities against Iran.
We have not forgotten the days when the US has rendered this Council ineffective in preventing Saddam’s aggression, stopping the use of chemical weapons against Iranians, as well as addressing the attack to an Iranian civil aircraft over the Persian Gulf by the American forces, killing all 290 people on board, including 66 children.
Rather than allowing the US to repeat such abusive pattern, the Council should strongly condemn the US for re-imposing its illegal sanctions against Iranians in violation of the UN Charter and international law.
These sanctions only harm the ordinary, and more importantly, vulnerable people such as women, children, elderly and patients. They prevent even the import of basic food, medicine, and medical devices.
Unlike the US declaration, in practice there is no exceptions or exemptions for importing such needs. Now, they argue that banks ‘don’t have confidence in Iran’s banking system to facilitate those transactions. That’s Iran’s problem; it is not our problem.’
Isn’t it ironic and disgraceful? How come they had confidence to Iran’s banking system till weeks ago and suddenly and for no reason lost their confidence?! In fact, they avoid such transactions because they are intimidated and threatened by a bullying and irresponsible State.
On 7 November 2018, the US Secretary of State shamelessly threatened all Iranians to mass starvation. He said the Iranian ‘leadership has to make a decision that they want their people to eat.’
Does weaponizing of food and medicine against civilians have any other designation than crime against humanity?
Isn’t the disruption of free trade and application of the US national laws to other nations thus disrespecting their sovereignty, a clear manifestation of economic terrorism?
The international community should stand against American bullying policies and the US authorities should be held to account for ordering, committing and enforcing such horrible crimes.
Through fabrication, disinformation and invoking irrelevant criteria, the US tries to create ambiguity and confusion in order to misinterpret the resolution with regard to Iran’s missile launches.
Here, I draw your attention to the interpretation of relevant paragraph of the resolution by the US Special Envoy on Iran, who says that the resolution ‘simply’ and ‘kindly’ calls upon Iran not to undertake certain activity. He then concludes that the resolution’s language is ‘hardly a clear and enforceable prohibition’.
Iran’s ballistic missile program is designed to be exclusively capable of delivering conventional warheads required to deter foreign threats.
While the Americans shamelessly argue that ‘Iran’s security concerns are entirely self-generated’, and also hypocritically state that Iran faces no natural threat from Israel, as recently as three months ago, its notorious Prime Minister threatened Iran with even nuclear annihilation. Definitely a wishful dream.
Moreover, no one can ignore consistent tremendous threats Iran continues to face from the US itself, in particular through its outdated mantra of ‘all options are on the table’.
They are dreaming wishfully to move us back to those days when Saddam’s planes bombed an Iranian city for 105 minutes — the longest aerial assault since WWII — killing and injuring over 1,000 civilians.
They also wish to move us back to those days when Saddam was raining missiles on our cities — some of them carrying chemical components provided by the US– and Iran was actively prevented from purchasing even the most rudimentary means of self-defense to at least deter the aggressor. Do not be surprised, they even prevented the export of barbed wire to Iran! Most of such restrictions still continue.
We have paid a very high price to save our territory from the aggressors and to ensure the security of our borders and citizens. Those days have long passed.
Living in such a volatile region as the Middle East, our Government will not and cannot compromise on its security and its conventional defensive capability as no other country does.
Describing Iran as a source of regional threat is nothing but a blame-shift in order to sell more American ‘beautiful weapons’ – as the US President calls them. Conflicts, insecurity, and instability in our region have two main sources: the occupation of Palestine by Israel and the American interventions and its massive military build-up in the region.
Who can also forget the US role — as openly confessed by its President during his campaign — in creating the ugliest face of terrorism, the monstrous ISIS. If it was not for Iran’s support and help, the black flag of ISIS was still flying around the Middle East. In reaction to Iran’s prominent role in fighting terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq, such groups have conducted a few terrorist attacks in Iran in 2017 and 2018.
Today, in addition to transferring ISIS elements to Afghanistan and Central Asian countries, the US has extended its sponsorship of terrorism to a vicious terrorist cult, the MKO, that has murdered more than 17,000 Iranians and many Iraqis and who currently cozy up to the highest political figures in Washington to destabilize Iran through terrorist activities.
Here, Mr. President, I would like to stress that according to the Charter, this Council represents all Member States thus its decision should also echo their views. Almost all members of this Organization have strongly supported the JCPOA and loudly voiced their rejection of the illegal unilateral sanctions that is a clear violation of resolution 2231. Consequently, the Council should hold the US accountable for re-imposing such sanctions and demand that the US end their application.
This also would be in line with the obligation imposed on the US by the ICJ’s order issued unanimously on 3 October 2018; an order which is a clear testament to the illegality of the US sanctions.
I would also like to clarify that our legal and technical observations on the report of the Secretary-General is contained in a letter that yesterday I have sent to your Excellency. It also covers our views on issues that I did not address in my remarks today.
Last but not the least, the US made baseless allegations against Iran, most of which are either not relevant to the agenda of this meeting or even does not fall under the Council’s purview. Therefore, in my statement, I confined myself to this meeting’s agenda and did not want to defy it as the US did. At the same, my country has responded to those allegations either through our Foreign Ministry or our representatives in relevant international fora in Geneva, Vienna, the Huge or here in New York.
I thank you, Mr. President.