U.S. unilateralism undercuts UN Charter, rule of law: envoy

January 13, 2023 - 22:55

TEHRAN - The United States has come under fire from Iran's ambassador to the UN for utilizing the international body to advance its "illegal political goals," stressing that such actions violate the UN Charter and the rule of law.

Amir Saeed Iravani made the comments at a UN Security Council public dialog on Thursday on the subject of promoting and strengthening the rule of law in maintaining international peace and security.

Iravani also said Iran’s nuclear activities are “consistent with our rights and obligations under the NPT.”

The text of the statement follows:

The rule of law is essential for maintaining international peace and security as it promotes predictability, stability, and justice in an international legal-based order.

The UN Charter sets forth the norms and principles for Member States, which they pledge to follow in order to maintain international peace, security, and the rule of law.

The fundamental principles of the UN Charter, such as the sovereign equality of all members, the prohibition of the threat or use of force in international relations, and the peaceful resolution of conflicts should act as a framework for advancing the rule of law within the United Nations.

Some Member States, in particular the United States, consistently misuse the authority and power of the UN, using the UN as a tool to exert pressure on sovereign states in pursuit of their own illegal political agendas and to further their unilateral actions. When it comes to the Security Council decisions, such illegal actions would have a detrimental impact on international peace and security.

This is especially evident in the Middle East, where the Security Council has failed to take necessary actions to address the ongoing atrocities and human rights violations committed by the Israeli regime in the occupied Palestine territory, including its continued violations of the UN resolutions and international law.

Additionally, the Council has failed to address acts of aggression, occupation, and infringement of national sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic.

In Afghanistan, the International Criminal Court (ICC) has overlooked the investigation into crimes committed by foreign forces during their 20-year-long presence, Meanwhile, the Security Council has not addressed the consequences of the hasty and irresponsible withdrawal of the U.S. and NATO forces from Afghanistan, which left the country facing severe challenges.

Unilateralism poses a serious threat to the rule of law and the UN Charter as well as impedes international cooperation and peace and security. The ongoing illegal unilateral acts by the United States, a permanent member of the Security Council, against sovereign Member States, such as Iran, and coercing other Member States to participate in these illegal actions or face repercussions, undermine the rule of law and violate the UN Charter.

The United States’ withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), re-imposition of unilateral coercive measures, flagrant violation of UN Security Council Resolution 2231, the illegal action in depriving Iran of its rights as an elected member of the Commission of the Status of Women, and open defiance of the International Court of Justice’s provisional order to lift sanctions on humanitarian goods are clear examples of how the United States undermines the rule of law within the UN system, they are only the surface of the issue.

To promote the rule of law in the maintenance of international peace and security, all Member States must fulfill their obligations under international law and the UN Charter, uphold their commitments to international treaties and agreements, utilize diplomatic means and dialogue to resolve conflicts and disputes peacefully and work with other states to find solutions that uphold and respect rules and principles of international peace and security.

All UN bodies should abide by their Charter-mandated responsibilities and prioritize transparency and accountability in their work. This would facilitate trust and collaboration among the UN organs.

Finally, Mr. President, regarding an unjustified mention and unfounded claim made by the esteemed Minister of State of the UAE regarding the three Iranian Islands in the Persian Gulf in his statement today, I would like to point out that such an unfounded claim, which is categorically rejected, is not consistent with principles of international law, including principles of good neighborliness and non-interference in the domestic affairs of other sovereign states. Respecting these principles is essential for promoting the rule of law at the UN.

We also reject the allegation made by the UK representative about Iran’s nuclear Peaceful programs. Our nuclear activities are peaceful and consistent with our rights and obligations under the NPT.

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