First Published: 2017-10-19

Haley: Iran must be judged in totality of its aggressive behaviour
US Ambassador pushes UN Security Council to follow tougher US stance on Iran which it accuses of threatening peace, security in Mideast.
Middle East Online

'Judging Iran by the narrow confines of the nuclear deal misses the true nature of the threat'

UNITED NATIONS - US Ambassador Nikki Haley urged the UN Security Council on Wednesday to follow in the US footsteps and confront Iran over what she described as its "aggressive, destabilizing and unlawful behaviour" in the Middle East.

The council met for its monthly debate on the region just days after US President Donald Trump refused to certify the Iran nuclear deal, leaving its fate to the US Congress.

"The United States has embarked on a course that attempts to address all aspects of Iran's destructive conduct -- not just one aspect," Haley told the council.

"It's critical that the international community do the same."

Trump's decision has been sharply criticized by Washington's partners in the deal -- France, Britain, China, and Russia -- which sit on the Security Council as permanent members along with the United States. Germany is also a signatory.

The 2015 nuclear deal was unanimously endorsed in a Security Council resolution, placing the onus on the top UN body to ensure its implementation.

Haley accused Iran of "playing" the council by complying with technical provisions of the deal while threatening peace and security in the Middle East with its "outlaw behaviour."

The council has adopted a "dangerously short-sighted approach", Haley said.

"Judging Iran by the narrow confines of the nuclear deal misses the true nature of the threat."

"Iran must be judged in totality of its aggressive, destabilizing and unlawful behaviour. To do otherwise would be foolish," she said.

- No mention of the Palestinians -

Haley pointed to arms sales and military support in Yemen, Lebanon and Syria as examples of Iranian violations of UN resolutions while singling out Iran's missile launches as "the regime's most threatening act."

The tougher US stance toward Iran provides an opportunity for the council to show that it will defend its resolutions and "change its policy toward the Iranian regime," she said.

Haley's appeal, however, failed to draw strong support.

Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia tersely reminded Haley that the Middle East debate is aimed at tackling the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and that she "didn't even mention the word Palestine."

Turning to Iran, Nebenzia warned that "attempts to dismantle the architecture of the agreement on the Iranian nuclear program will lead to a negative reaction in the Middle East and beyond."

France did not mention the Iran nuclear deal, and warned against downplaying the importance of a Israeli-Palestinian deal to foster stability in the Middle East.

Britain said it was ready to address concerns about Iran's ballistic missile program and regional activities, but warned against scrapping the nuclear deal altogether.

"We encourage careful consideration of the implications to the security of the US and its allies before taking any steps that might undermine the JCPOA, such as re-imposing sanctions on Iran lifted under the agreement," said British Deputy Ambassador Jonathan Allen.

The nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), provided for a gradual lifting of sanctions on Iran in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear program.

Iran's ambassador hit back, accusing Haley of providing "the wrong address when it comes to the root causes of insecurity in the Middle East".

At the "core" of the all conflicts in the Middle East is Israel's "occupation of Palestinian land," said Ambassador Gholamali Khoshroo.

He argued that "no country had done more than Iran" in the fight against the Islamic State group and slammed the US administration for selling weapons to Saudi Arabia, which is waging war in Yemen.

Council members heard a briefing from UN official Miroslav Jenca, who welcomed the recent Palestinian unity deal and again criticized Israel for building new settlements in the West Bank.

 

Turkey, US agree to ‘work together’ in Syria

Fears of expanding Syrian war could trigger peace deal

Six suffer breathing difficulties after Turkish shelling in Afrin

Thousands protest corruption in Tel Aviv amid PM indictment call

Syrians crammed in shared flats in Afrin

Russian mercenaries - a discrete weapon in Syria

Iran protests ban on wrestler who threw bout to avoid Israel

Battle to free Mosul of IS 'intellectual terrorism'

Turkey frees Garman-Turk journalist after one year without charge

Turkey hands life sentences to 3 journalists for Gulen links

Prominent jihadist commander killed by rival Syria rebels

300 Russians killed in Syria battle last week

Tillerson, Erdogan have ‘productive, open’ talk

Iran raises rates, freezes accounts in bid to shore up rial

Kremlin says five Russians killed in US Syria strikes

Oman FM in rare visit by Arab official to Jerusalem

Senior IS leader extradited to Iraq from Turkey

Strikes hit another hospital in Syria's Idlib

Churches snub Jerusalem reception over tax dispute with Israeli authorities

Tillerson says US never gave 'heavy arms' to Kurdish YPG

Captured foreign IS suspects claim innocence

Yemeni mother awaits death penalty for spying for UAE

Fuel shortage shuts down Gaza's only power plant

Morocco arrests three suspected IS terrorists

Family of dead environmentalist in Iran threatened

Israel hands life sentence to Palestinian for triple murder

US appeals to Turkey to concentrate on fighting IS

Turkey sets up new 'observation point' in Syria's Idlib

Malaysia rejects criticism over Israeli visit

Tillerson in Ankara to ease Turkey tensions

Egypt arrests ex-presidential candidate

Tillerson: Hezbollah is part of Lebanon's 'political process'

Netanyahu says government ‘stable’ despite police recommending indictment

Corruption accusations facing Netanyahu

Syria denies ‘unacceptable’ chemical weapons use

Nations pledge nearly $25 billion toward Iraq's reconstruction

Egypt remands in custody former anti-corruption chief

Turkish PM 'hopes' German journalist is freed soon

US agrees to send $1 billion in annual aid to Jordan

Iran arrests money changers amid rial collapse

Saudi Arabia seeks to further reduce oil stockpiles

Turkey imposes curfews in Kurdish-majority province

Tillerson urges allies to focus on fighting IS

France threatens Syria strikes if chemical attacks proven

Tillerson says enduring IS defeat not yet achieved