Monday, March 3, 2008

New UN Sanctions Against Iran

The United Nations Security Council passed a new resolution against Iran. The vote was 14-0, with Indonesia abstaining.

Iran's UN Ambassador Mohammad Khazee told the council just before the vote that Iran “would not comply” with the new resolution.

Russia and China, considered Iran’s allies at the UN, voted for the resolution and against Iran.

Iran had expected that South Africa, Libya, and Vietnam, non-permanent members of the Security Council, to oppose the resolution. They all voted in favor of it.

The new UN resolution reiterates previous demands that Iran stops its uranium enrichment program. But Tehran refuses to do so.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) also reported in February that Iran may have run a nuclear “weaponization” project. Iran had refused to clarify questions about reports suggesting it may have been exploring ways to weaponize nuclear materials, calling them “baseless” and “fabricated.”

“I urge Iran to be as active and as cooperative as possible in working with the agency to clarify this matter of serious concern,” IAEA Director General Mohammed ElBaradei told the agency’s 35-member board of governors at the start of its meeting today. “This is necessary to enable the agency to make a determination about the nature and scope of all of Iran's past nuclear activities,” ElBaradei added.

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