The United Nations Security Council has defeated a US resolution to indefinitely extend a UN arms embargo on Iran that is set to expire in October.
Rabat – A resolution to extend the UN arms embargo on Iran was rejected by the UN Security Council (UNSC) on Friday, August 14. The United States put forth the resolution, and only the Dominican Republic supported it. The vote at the UNSC resulted in two votes in favor, two against and eleven abstentions.
The UNSC decision saw traditional US allies abstain, as the indefinite nature of the proposed extension worried diplomats, resulting in a clean vote that did not require a veto from permanent UNSC members Russia or China. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called the decision a “failure to act decisively” over the US resolution which Pompeo called “reasonable.”
The expiry of the arms embargo is seen as a symbol of good faith towards Iran as part of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), commonly known as the “Iran nuclear deal.” The nuclear non-proliferation agreement was signed by China, the EU, France, Germany, the US, UK, and Russia. However,the United States later withdrew its participation and reinstated grueling sanctions on Iran.
The United States now aims to use its status as an original signee to the JCPOA to attempt to trigger a “snapback.” A mechanism for any participant in the JCPOA, a “snapback” refers to reinstating all pre-agreement sanctions on Iran. The United States withdrew from the agreement in 2017 but still intends to use the mechanism, claiming the right as an original signee.
The EU has already committed to not accepting any diplomatic maneuvering to trigger a snapback by manipulating the wording of the agreement. “We would not support such a decision, which would be incompatible with our current efforts to preserve the JCPOA,” foreign ministers of Britain, Germany, and France told Reuters on June 19.
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