10 June 2010
By 12 out of 15 votes, the Security Council of the United Nations on Wednesday approved a fourth round of sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program, which many fear is ultimately aimed at developing nuclear weapons. Turkey and Brazil voted against the resolution text while Lebanon abstained. Earlier this week, the permanent members of the council – Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States – agreed on the most far-reaching sanctions package so far.
Hours before the vote, the US, France and Russia dismissed a proposal by Iran to swap some of its enriched uranium for reactor fuel, arguing that unlike the original plan drawn up in Geneva eight months ago the proposal negotiated by Brazil and Turkey would leave Iran with enough material to make a nuclear weapon.
The new measures prohibit Iranian investment in nuclear facilities and activities abroad and ban new categories of weapons to be imported into Iran. It imposes asset freezes on 40 new entities, many linked to the Revolutionary Guard in Iran. Resolution 1929 also imposes sweeping new restrictions on financial activities that could contribute to Iran's nuclear or proliferation activities.
Travel and financial restrictions also were imposed on more officials and institutions, and the resolution has a qualified call for the boarding and inspection of ships heading for Iran. However, that can be carried out only if the country whose flag the vessel flies agrees to inspections.
The World Jewish Congress (WJC) applauded the Security Council vote. WJC President Ronald S. Lauder, said in a statement: “This resolution is an important demonstration of the international community’s unwillingness to tolerate a nuclear Iran that is characterized by continuous human rights abuses and threats against its neighbors. The resolution includes a ban on Iran’s acquiring heavy weapons and prevents Iran from investing in any nuclear related entities such as uranium mines or nuclear enrichment plants.”
“The World Jewish Congress believes that these sanctions are an important step and that additional pressures must be applied as well in order to stop Iran. We applaud the members of the UN Security Council, led by the United States Mission to the United Nations which invested yeoman efforts, for all their work in passing these measures and urge the international community to immediately enact and enforce them. We also urge the European Union to enact its own sanctions, as it has been promising for a long time, which would go a long way in bolstering these UN measures. We also urge the United States Congress to finalize its sanctions legislation and President Obama to sign it into law. The entire international community can together demonstrate the courage and determination to exercise the ability to keep Iran in check,” added Lauder.
Meanwhile, Russia said the sanctions meant it could not supply Iran with the S-300 anti-missile system Tehran had ordered, a military source told the 'Interfax' news agency. "It is compulsory to fulfil a decision by the UN Security Council, and Russia is not an exception here," the unnamed source in the Federal Service for Military Technical Co-operation, which supervises Russian arms sales, was quoted as saying, adding: "Naturally, the contract for the delivery to Tehran of the S-300 air defence missile systems will be frozen. Russia agreed the S-300 deal with Iran several years ago, but has never delivered the weapons, under pressure from the US and Israel.
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