Reuters: The United States said on Wednesday the U.N. nuclear watchdog has a “statutory obligation” to refer Iranian breaches of its non-proliferation obligations to the U.N.
Security Council for possible economic sanctions. Reuters
VIENNA – The United States said on Wednesday the U.N. nuclear watchdog has a “statutory obligation” to refer Iranian breaches of its non-proliferation obligations to the U.N. Security Council for possible economic sanctions.
“The Security Council has the international legal and political authority that will bring this issue to a successful and peaceful resolution,” U.S. ambassador Jackie Sanders said in the text of a speech delivered at a meeting of the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) board of governors.
She said the Security Council (UNSC) also “has the authority to require and enforce a suspension of Iran’s (uranium) enrichment-related and (plutonium) reprocessing activities,” something Tehran has done voluntarily.
Washington accuses Iran of developing nuclear weapons under cover of a civilian atomic energy program. Tehran denies this, insisting its nuclear ambitions are limited to the peaceful generation of electricity.
“The (IAEA) board cannot ignore forever its statutory obligation to report this matter to the UNSC,” Sanders said, referring to what she described as Iran’s “non-compliance” with the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
President Bush, at the request of key European allies, is mulling whether to join forces with France, Britain and Germany, who have offered Tehran economic and political incentives if it scraps its enrichment program.
Iran refuses to permanently abandon its enrichment program, saying the production of enriched uranium fuel — a process that can be used to make fuel for power plants or weapons — is a sovereign right it will never give up.