Russia reiterates U.S. move to extend arms embargo on Iran violates 2231 resolution

August 14, 2020 - 14:13

TEHRAN - Russia’s permanent representative to the Vienna-based international organizations said on Friday that the United States’ attempts to extend arms embargo on Iran is a violation of UN Security Council Resolution 2231 which endorsed the 2105 nuclear deal, officially known as the JCPOA.

“US attempt to extend #armsembargo against #Iran constitutes a violation of UNSC res.2231 by Washington. The only legitimate way to extend embargo and other “sunset” provisions is a relevant decision of Joint Commission on #JCPOA to be made by consensus (see res.2231, Annex B),” Mikhail Ulyanov tweeted.

The United Nations Security Council started voting on Thursday on a U.S. bid to extend an arms embargo on Iran, which is opposed by veto-powers Russia and China, and the result was set to be announced at a meeting on Friday, diplomats said, Reuters reported on Friday.

The 15-member council has been operating virtually amid the coronavirus pandemic so states have 24 hours to cast a vote.

The 13-year-old arms embargo is due to expire in October under a 2015 nuclear deal among Iran, Russia, China, Germany, Britain, France and the United States. However, Washington unilaterally quit the agreement in May 2018 and imposed sanctions on Iran.

In a bid to gain more council support, the United States slashed its draft resolution on Tuesday to just four paragraphs that would simply extend a weapons ban on Tehran “until the Security Council decides otherwise.”

But diplomats and analysts said the draft text was still likely to fail. To be adopted a resolution needs at least nine votes in favor and no vetoes by the permanent members of the council.

If the United States is unsuccessful it has threatened to try and trigger a return of all UN sanctions on Iran using a provision in the nuclear deal, even though Washington quit the accord.

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Wednesday that the United States is not in a position to trigger the snapback mechanism which returns all the UN sanctions on Iran.

“From legal point of view, the United States has no status to use snapback mechanism. Three European allies of the United States had announced clearly in the previous session of the United Nations Security Council that the United States cannot apply this mechanism,” Zarif told reporters after a cabinet meeting.

In a tweet on Wednesday, Ulyanov said the United States’ attempt to revise the provisions of the UN Security Council’s 2231 resolution to extend arms embargo on Iran is “counterproductive” and “unjustifiable”.

“The US attempts to revise the provisions of UNSC res. 2231 on restrictions on arms trade with #Iran are counterproductive and unjustifiable,” he tweeted.


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