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US Urges UN to Tighten Restrictions on Iran

US Urges UN to Tighten Restrictions on Iran

Wednesday, 12 December, 2018 - 19:15
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. (Reuters)
Asharq Al-Awsat
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned on Wednesday of Iran’s continued ballistic missiles tests, urging the United Nations to tighten restrictions on Tehran.

"We risk the security of our people if Iran continues stocking up on ballistic missiles," Pompeo told a Security Council meeting on Iran.

"We risk escalation of conflict in the region if we fail to restore deterrence. And we convey to all other malign actors that they too can defy the Security Council with impunity if we do nothing," he said.

Iran has "hundreds of missiles which pose a threat to our partners in the region," Pompeo said.

Tehran recently confirmed a medium-range ballistic missile test, arguing it is legal and necessary for its defense.

Pompeo said the United States would press to preserve a UN arms embargo on Iran due to expire in 2020 and urge the Security Council to set up inspections at sea to prevent weapons shipments.

He also called for the return of a firmer prohibition on Iran developing missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons, toughening language from the Security Council resolution that supported the nuclear deal.

President Donald Trump has made pressuring Iran a major focus, withdrawing from an international accord on curbing Tehran's nuclear program negotiated under his predecessor Barack Obama and reimposing sweeping sanctions.

Confirming US concerns, a UN report submitted to the Security Council said that recent missiles fired by Yemen's Houthi rebels were manufactured in Iran.

The UN political chief said Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on Iran "to carefully consider and address" concerns raised by UN member states about its ballistic missile activities.

Rosemary DiCarlo told the Security Council that Guterres welcomes the reaffirmation of support for the 2015 nuclear deal by the remaining participants— Russia, China, Britain, France, Germany and Iran.

She said "it is essential that the plan continues to work for all participants, including by delivering economic tangible benefits to the Iranian people."

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