U.S. and Canada to boycott Iran’s Disarmament Presidency in UN
U.S. and Canada jointly announced, their ambassadors will boycott Iran’s looming presidency of the UN disarmament conference where Tehran will be at the helm for five weeks.
The presidency of the disarmament conference follows an alphabetical rotation among the 65 member states. Tehran will assume the presidency of the conference from May 27 until June 23.
U.S. Mission to the United Nations spokesperson, Erin Pelton, issued a press release today stating “Iran’s upcoming rotation as President of the Conference on Disarmament (CD) is unfortunate and highly inappropriate. The United States continues to believe that countries that are under Chapter VII sanctions for weapons proliferation or massive human-rights abuses should be barred from any formal or ceremonial positions in UN bodies.”
Spokesman for Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister, Rick Roth, said
“This makes a mockery of disarmament issues, and the world’s sincere desire to make progress.”
Meanwhile Iran defended its election today, as the rotating chair of the world’s sole multilateral disarmament forum. Iran’s U.N. mission spokesman, Alireza Miryousefi said “The Islamic Republic of Iran is a founding member of the United Nations. Its election to the presidency of the Conference on Disarmament, as the most important disarmament negotiating body of the U.N., is its right in accordance with the established practice and rules of procedure of this organ.”
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is urging the disarmament conference to overcome its deadlock.
Canada does not have Nuclear weapons and U.S. has the largest number in the world, over 7700 with 2150 active warheads. U.S. and Iran are both signatories to Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), most comprehensive UN treaty that bans all nuclear explosions in all environments, for military or civilian purposes, adopted in 1996. Neither Iran nor U.S. has yet ratified the treaty.
Currently, Iran faces four rounds of UN sanctions over its disputed nuclear program.