Iran UN ambassador slams UN alleged drone probe as 'illegal'
The Iranian UN ambassador slams the probe on the basis that Resolution 2231 has nothing to do with the export of weapons nor does it charge the UN Secretariat with the responsibility of carrying out the investigation.
In a letter addressed to the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, as well as the head of the UN Security Council, Iran’s ambassador and permanent representative to the United Nations, Amir Saeed Iravani, said the UN's investigation into alleged claims that Iranian drones were being used in the conflict in Ukraine is illegal with reference to Resolution 2231.
According to Iravani, the West is attempting to relate Security Council Resolution 2231 with the alleged use of drones in the Ukraine conflict, while in reality the resolution neither prohibits the export of weapons nor allots to the UN Secretariat the responsibility and capacity to carry out the investigation.
The letter, of which a copy was also sent to the facilitator of Resolution 2231 (Ireland), detailed Iran's stance on the unfounded claims made by the Europan troika (France, Germany, and Britain) and the US on the use of Iranian-owned drones in the Ukraine conflict.
"It is ironic that these countries, particularly the three Permanent Members of the Security Council, accuse Iran of violating a specific paragraph of Security Council Resolution 2231 (2015), while they continue to be in flagrant violation of all their explicit legal obligations under that same resolution," Iravani said.
He cited the US withdrawal from the JCPOA as an example of breaching international law, the Charter of the UN, and Security Council Resolution 2231 (2015).
Referring to the letter that was sent by the US, France, Germany, and the UK to the Security Council last Friday, Iravani said, "The authors of the aforesaid letters have desperately made every effort, including through disseminating unsubstantiated, undocumented, and erroneous information, raising inaccurate assumptions as well as resorting to totally flawed, arbitrary, and misleading interpretations of Security Council Resolution 2231 (2015), to establish an entirely artificial linkage between that resolution and the use of unmanned aerial vehicles in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine so as to seemingly justify their unfounded claims against my country."
He further pointed out that "the wording, references, and requests" in the letter sent by the EU troika and the US were nearly identical to those of the Permanent Representative of Ukraine dated 17 October 2022 (S/2022/771).
Iravani stated that this is blatant proof that Resolution 2231 (2015) was being deliberately bent to fit the political agenda of the referenced authors, as much as it reflected a clear undermining of the UN mandate.
"As stated clearly in my letter dated 19 October 2022, the restrictions specified in paragraphs 5 and 6 (b) of Annex B to resolution 2231 (2015) have officially terminated on 18 October 2020, and since then, none of Iran's 'supply, sale, or transfer of arms or related material' to other countries fall within resolution 2231 (2015)," he noted.
"Additionally, the claim made in the above-said letters regarding the violation of paragraph 4 of Annex B to resolution 2231 (2015) is an erroneous, arbitrary, and yet misleading interpretation that contradicts the letter and spirit of that paragraph. That paragraph clearly refers to restrictions on items, materials, equipment, goods, and technology “that the State determines could contribute to the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems”. Iran has never produced or supplied, nor does it intend to produce or supply, items, materials, equipment, goods, and technology that could contribute to the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems," he further noted.
Speaking in regards to the investigation the UN intends to carry in the context of resolution 2231, Iravani said, "I would like to underline that the resolution itself provides no legal basis for such an investigation," while drawing attention to the initial arrangements that were set in a note dated 16 January 2016 for the Security Council to carry out tasks related to the resolution.
In that note, it is specified that tasks of “monitoring the implementation of the resolution,” “answering inquiries from the Member States and international organizations regarding the implementation of the resolution,” and “responding appropriately to information regarding alleged actions inconsistent with the resolution” must only be carried out by the Security Council.
"At the same time, according to that Note, the Secretariat of the Organization is asked only to assist the facilitator in the organization and staffing of informal meetings of the Security Council related to the implementation of resolution 2231 (2015), manage all incoming and outgoing communications related to the implementation of the resolution, draft correspondence, speaking notes, and briefings of the facilitator related to the implementation of the resolution, maintain and archive all information and documents relating to the Security Council’s work related to the implementation of the resolution and similar administrative services, and perform any other task, upon request from the Security Council, to support the implementation of the resolution, which was not the case to date.”
As the misuse of the resolution is illegal and in clear violation of the Secretariat’s mandate, it follows that the results gathered from this inspection will be nullified.
The letter concludes with Iran cautioning the Secretariat from carrying out an illegal investigation or engaging in operations that bend the UN mandate at the will of the West.
He urged the Secretary-General to drop the investigation, and he categorically rejected all accusations against Iran contained in the aforesaid letters.
In the end, Iravani requested that the letter be circulated as a document of the Security Council.
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