x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Iranian officials dismiss Security Council proposal

Iranian officials are nonchalant about a new US-proposed draft resolution to the UN Security Council that could see more sanctions set against the country

TEHRAN // Iranian officials were nonchalant yesterday about a new US-proposed draft resolution to the UN Security Council that could see more sanctions set against the country, despite a trilateral deal by Iran, Turkey and Brazil that had initially been hailed as a breakthrough in Iran's nuclear standoff with the West. "We don't consider the movements in New York seriously because the countries that favour the passing of the resolution are in the minority," Iran's foreign minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, told Iran's Arabic Al Alam television last night.

The US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, on Tuesday announced completion of the draft, which was met with approval of all permanent members of the Security Council. Mojtaba Samareh Hashemi, a close aide and senior adviser to the Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was also dismissive and told reporters in Tehran after a cabinet meeting that the draft had "no legitimacy at all". Allaedin Boroujerdi, the chairman of the Iranian parliament's national security and foreign policy committee, told IRNA that efforts towards passing a new sanctions resolution on Iran were "like trying to pound water in a mortar".

Talk of "imposing sanctions has faded and this resolution is the last effort by the West", the Fars news agency quoted the vice president, Ali Akbar Salehi, who also heads Iran's atomic energy organisation, as saying. "They feel that for the first time in the world developing countries are able to defend their rights in the world arena without resorting to the major powers, and that is very hard for them."

Mrs Clinton stressed that the United States will push for the soonest possible adoption of the new resolution, which she said had been prepared with the approval of China and Russia. Those countries have expressed their limited endorsement of the US pressure on Iran. "Circulating a draft resolution on Iran does not mean the door of diplomacy is closed, and we believe that dialogue, diplomacy and negotiations are the best way to address the Iranian nuclear issue," said Li Baodong, the Chinese permanent representative to the UN.

The Russian foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, confirmed his country's accord with the drafted resolution yesterday, but also expressed concern about the imposition of unilateral sanctions on Iran by the United States and the European Union in addition to the Security Council's draft resolution. @Email:msinaiee@thenational.ae