Friday, January 29, 2010

Clinton Intensifies Pressure on Iran

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
during her speech at L'Ecole Militaire
Paris. 29 January 2010. AFP

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton today added pressure on Iran by publicly threatening China into accepting tough UN sanctions against the Islamic Republic. During an address to France's war college, L'Ecole Militaire, Clinton said China risked diplomatic isolation and economic uncertainty if it didn't join the international push to further sanction Iran for its pursuit of nuclear technologies and weapons delivery systems.

“As we move away from the engagement track that has not produced the result that some had hoped for, and move forward the pressure and sanctions track, China will be under a lot of pressure to recognize the destabilizing impact that a nuclear-armed Iran would have in the Gulf from which they receive a significant percent of its oil supplies,” Clinton said. [AFP, 29 January].

Clinton added that she understood why China would not want to penalize a country from which it gets so much of the natural resources. But she urged Beijing to think about the longer-term implications of Iran's' nuclear program: triggering an arms race across the Middle East, and possibility of an Israeli military action against Iran.

The US is reportedly working with Saudi Arabia and the U.A.E. to assure Beijing that it can increase its oil supplies from key energy-producing Arab states to offset supplies from Iran in the event of fresh sanctions. The U.A.E. has reportedly told China it is prepared to incease its oil exports to Beijing to 150,000 to 200,000 barrels-a-day from the current level of 50,000 barrels a day

In London, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov indicated Moscow was moving towards the US position of backing new sanctions on Iran after Tehran rejected a nuclear-fuel agreement that Russia helped broker last October. In her Paris speech Clinton said that US-Russian relations have steadily improved since Mr. Obama called for a "reset" in the relationship last year.

"The United States is proud of what our two countries have accomplished together during this past year," Clinton said. "Together, we have made progress on a range of mutual security concerns."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

nice post. thanks.