US’ Mike Pompeo calls on UN to re-impose ballistic missile restrictions on Iran

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told a gathering of the UN Security Council that the US has evidence that Iran is supplying the Houthis in Yemen with missiles and weapons. (Screenshot)
Updated 12 December 2018

US’ Mike Pompeo calls on UN to re-impose ballistic missile restrictions on Iran

  • A 2015 UN resolution "called upon" Iran to refrain for up to eight years from work on ballistic missiles
  • The US wants the council to toughen that measure, Pompeo said

NEW YORK: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told the UN Security Council on Wednesday that the US is seeking to re-impose previous UN restrictions on Iran’s ballistic missile program, and that the UN should not lift an arms embargo on Iran in 2020.

A 2015 UN resolution "called upon" Iran to refrain for up to eight years from work on ballistic missiles designed to deliver nuclear weapons. Some states argue that the language does not make it obligatory.

The US wants the council to toughen that measure, Pompeo said, to reflect language in a 2010 resolution that left no room for interpretation by banning Iran from "activity related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using ballistic missile technology."

He said the UN should also establish "inspection and interdiction measures, in ports and on the high seas, to thwart Iran's continuing efforts to circumvent arms restrictions."

He added that Iran does not comply with UN resolutions and continues to support terrorism around the world and that the US has evidence that Iran is supplying the Houthis in Yemen with missiles and weapons. 

"Iran is harboring Al-Qaeda, supporting Taliban militants in Afghanistan, arming terrorists in Lebanon, facilitating illicit trade in Somali charcoal benefiting Al-Shabaab, and training and equipping Shiite militias in Iraq," he said.

Pompeo said that the US’s continued “goodwill gestures” had been “futile in correcting Iran’s missile activity” and its “destructive behavior.”

Eight EU nations underlined their commitment to the Iran nuclear deal while urging Tehran to stop its "destabilizing regional activities," especially the launch of ballistic missiles.

Their statement said: "It has been confirmed that Iran continues to implement its nuclear related commitments."

But they warned that ballistic-missile-related activities including "the launch of nuclear-capable missiles and any transfers of missiles, missile technologies and components" would violate Security Council resolutions.

Ambassadors of Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden and United Kingdom issued the statement outside the UN Security Council on Wednesday ahead of a meeting on Iran's compliance with the 2015 nuclear agreement and the council resolution endorsing it.


Iran dismisses ‘desperate’ US move to end nuclear waivers

Updated 28 May 2020

Iran dismisses ‘desperate’ US move to end nuclear waivers

  • ‘Ending waivers for nuclear cooperation with Iran ... has effectively no impact on Iran’s continued work’

TEHRAN: Tehran on Thursday dismissed the impact of what it called Washington’s “desperate attempt” to end sanction waivers for nations that remain in the Iran nuclear accord.
The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran said the United States had made the move in a bid “to distract public opinion from its continued defeats at the hands of Iran.”
“Ending waivers for nuclear cooperation with Iran... has effectively no impact on Iran’s continued work” on what the Islamic republic insists is a purely civilian nuclear energy program, its spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi added in a statement published on the agency’s website.
The US decision, he said, was in response to Iranian fuel shipments to Venezuela — which is also under US sanctions — and the “significant advancements of Iran’s nuclear industry.”
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday that the United States was responding to Iran’s “brinksmanship” — its scrapping of certain nuclear commitments aimed at pressuring Washington to remove sanctions as called for by the 2015 accord.
“These escalatory actions are unacceptable and I cannot justify renewing the waiver,” Pompeo said in a statement.
President Donald Trump withdrew the US from the landmark agreement — also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA — and reimposed sanctions on Iran in 2018.
The remaining parties to the deal include Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia.
In May 2019, Iran announced it was suspending nuclear commitments to the deal, starting with removing limits on its heavy water and enriched uranium stockpiles.
It was in retaliation for US sanctions and what Iran deemed Europe’s inaction to provide it with the JCPOA’s economic benefits.
Washington had until now issued waivers to allow companies, primarily from Russia, to keep carrying out the nuclear work of the agreement without risking legal ramifications in the US economy.
It will end waivers that allowed the modification of the heavy water reactor in Arak, which prevented it from using plutonium for military use, as well as the export of spent and scrap research reactor fuel.
Kamalvandi said ending the waivers would not impact Iran’s continued work on the Arak reactor and “other equipment” by Iranian experts.