Iran Focus: London, Jun. 09 – The following are some reactions to the vote by the UN Security Council on Wednesday to tighten sanctions on Iran over its refusal to suspend suspected nuclear weapons activities:
London, Jun. 09 – The following are some reactions to the vote by the UN Security Council on Wednesday to tighten sanctions on Iran over its refusal to suspend suspected nuclear weapons activities:
US President, Barack Obama:
Today, the United Nations Security Council voted overwhelmingly to sanction Iran for its continued failure to live up to its obligations. This resolution will put in place the toughest sanctions ever faced by the Iranian government, and it sends an unmistakable message about the international community’s commitment to stopping the spread of nuclear weapons.
For years, the Iranian government has failed to live up to its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. It has violated its commitments to the International Atomic Energy Agency. It has ignored U.N. Security Council resolutions. And while Iran’s leaders hide behind outlandish rhetoric, their actions have been deeply troubling. Indeed, when I took office just over 16 months ago, Iranian intransigence was well-established. Iran had gone from zero centrifuges spinning to several thousand, and the international community was divided about how to move forward.
These are the most comprehensive sanctions that the Iranian government has faced. They will impose restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activities, its ballistic missile program, and, for the first time, its conventional military. They will put a new framework in place to stop Iranian smuggling, and crack down on Iranian banks and financial transactions. They target individuals, entities, and institutions -– including those associated with the Revolutionary Guard –- that have supported Iran’s nuclear program and prospered from illicit activities at the expense of the Iranian people. And we will ensure that these sanctions are vigorously enforced, just as we continue to refine and enforce our own sanctions on Iran alongside our friends and our allies.
Saturday will mark one year from the day that an election captivated the attention of the world -– an event that should have been remembered for how the Iranian people participated with remarkable enthusiasm, but will instead be remembered for how the Iranian government brutally suppressed dissent and murdered the innocent, including a young woman left to die in the street.
Actions do have consequences, and today the Iranian government will face some of those consequences. Because whether it is threatening the nuclear non-proliferation regime, or the human rights of its own citizens, or the stability of its own neighbors by supporting terrorism, the Iranian government continues to demonstrate that its own unjust actions are a threat to justice everywhere.
I want and hope for the people of Iran that the government of Iran will make a different choice. It can make a different choice and pursue a course that will reaffirm the NPT as the basis of global non-proliferation and disarmament -– a course that will advance Iran’s own security and prosperity, and the peace of the wider world. Today’s sanctions are yet another signal that if the Iranian government continues to undermine the NPT and the peace that it protects, then Iran will find itself more isolated, less prosperous and less secure.
President-elect of the opposition National Council of Resistance of Iran, Maryam Rajavi:
The adoption of the sanction resolution, after two years of fruitless talks, made it abundantly clear that negotiations would only provide the regime with time and opportunity to complete its nuclear projects.
In the past two years, a multitude of incentives, including talks without preconditions or providing 20-percent enriched uranium or even ignoring the regime’s continuing enrichment, have utterly failed. In the past few months, the Iranian regime did its utmost to prevent the adoption of the resolution and did not spare any threat or enticement to its foreign interlocutors. The last step in this endeavor was the deceptive and futile stunt with Turkey and Brazil.
Resolution 1929 is a necessary but insufficient response to a regime, which in blatant breach of all international standards and covenants and in pursuit of the atom bomb has threatened regional and global peace and security. As the Iranian Resistance has repeatedly underscored, the mullahs view any negotiation and concession as a sign of the world community’s weakness and feel emboldened to advance their nefarious nuclear program.
The mullahs consider nuclear weapons and domination of Iraq as two pillars indispensable to prolonging their illegitimate rule and will therefore not abandon those plans, especially amid heightening public disdain toward the clerical regime and intensifying internal fissures.
Democratic change in Iran is the ultimate solution to rid the world of the nightmare of fundamentalists and terrorists armed with nuclear weapons. Decisiveness is the only correct approach toward this regime. Such a policy should include on the one hand a comprehensive oil, arms, technological and diplomatic embargo and on the other the recognition of the Iranian people’s right to resist against religious dictatorship and the lifting of restrictions placed on the Iranian Resistance.
US Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton:
This was a very important decision by the international community to demonstrate resolve and unity in the face of Iran’s continuing defiance of the rules and norms of the IAEA and the expectations of the Security Council. This set of sanctions, the first agreed to under the Obama Administration, adds to and strengthens the sanction regime. We are gratified by the positive response that our year of engagement has produced.
When we started this effort, there was no appetite in the international community for further pressure in the form of sanctions on Iran. The challenge that President Obama faced in trying to reach out and engage Iran was politically difficult, but it served a very important purpose: to demonstrate clearly that the United States was willing to pursue diplomatic engagement and therefore our efforts were always on a dual-track approach.
Simultaneously, Brazil and Turkey were pursuing an additional diplomatic effort and we appreciate their willingness to work very hard to get to some satisfactory outcome. At the end of the day, they were not successful, but we do recognize and acknowledge their good faith in pursuing their course.
So the sanctions have now been passed by an overwhelming vote, and we will move to implement them. I am appointing Bob Einhorn, our special advisor for nonproliferation, to head up our government-wide team to oversee the implementation of these sanctions. We want to be sure that we don’t just pass the sanctions and then leave it to chance as to whether or not they are being implemented.
British Foreign Secretary, William Hague :
I welcome the action the United Nations has taken today. The new resolution is an important statement of international resolve to prevent Iranian nuclear proliferation.
It intensifies peaceful and legitimate international pressure on Iran to change course and restore the trust in its intentions that is so badly lacking.
Nothing Iran has done in recent months has shown that it is ready to address international concern that its nuclear programme is not for peaceful purposes. Instead it has continued to renege on commitments, continued to defy the UN Security Council and continued to refuse to discuss its nuclear programme with the E3+3.
Britain and its partners remain ready to meet Iran at any time for meaningful negotiations on the nuclear issue. Our offer remains on the table and we will respond to positive steps by Iran.
Foreign Ministers of China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States, with the support of the High Representative of the European Union:
We, the Foreign Ministers of China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States, would like to take this opportunity to reaffirm our determination and commitment to seek an early negotiated solution to the Iranian nuclear issue.
The adoption of UNSCR 1929, while reflecting the international community’s concern about the Iranian nuclear programme and reconfirming the need for Iran to comply with the UN Security Council and IAEA Board of Governors requirements, keeps the door open for continued engagement between E3+3 and Iran.
The aim of our efforts is to achieve a comprehensive and long-term settlement which would restore international confidence in the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme, while respecting Iran’s legitimate rights to the peaceful use of atomic energy. We are resolute in continuing our work for this purpose.
We expect Iran to demonstrate a pragmatic attitude and to respond positively to our openness towards dialogue and negotiations.