UCMs Amount to Terrorism: Iran’s UN Envoy

UCMs Amount to Terrorism: Iran’s UN Envoy

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A ranking Iranian diplomat at the UN denounced the Unilateral Coercive Measures (UCMs) as a flagrant violation of the fundamental principles of international law and human rights, saying the sanctions against Iran are tantamount to terrorism and constitute crimes against humanity.

Addressing a meeting of the United Nations General Assembly Sixth Committeeon “measures to eliminate international terrorism”, held in New York on October 3, the first secretary of the permanent mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the UNMohammad Ghorbanpour warned that the Unilateral Coercive Measures impair the mobilization of appropriate resources required for combating terrorism and impede effective cooperation among Member States in this scourge.

What follows is the full text of his speech:

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful.

Mr. Chair,

At the outset, I would like to align myself with the statements delivered on behalf of Non-Aligned Movement as well as the OIC and would like to deliver the following in my national capacity.

Mr. Chair,

It has been nearly half a century since the Item on “Measures to eliminate international terrorism” was included in the agenda of the General Assembly. Throughout decades, the United Nations, in particular this Committee, has unwaveringly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. Nevertheless, despite the promising progress that we have all made in combating this menace, the fight against terrorism still suffers from the politicization and double standards of few as the international community yet again witnesses acts of terrorism being brazenly perpetrated against civilians, scientists and governmental officials not just by terrorist groups but by certain arrogant states in line with their state policies.

The terrorist attacks committed by the US against General Ghasem Soleimani, the hero of combatting ISIL in the Middle East, on 3 January 2020 in Baghdad International Airport while he was on an official visit by the invitation of the Iraqi Government; the assassination of Dr. Mohsen Fakhri Zade, the Iranian Scientist and the Deputy of the Ministery of Defence, on 27 November 2020; the terrorist attack on Natanz, the Iranian nuclear facility, in April 2021 by the occupying regime in Palestinian territory; and many other terrorist attacks, including cyber-attacks against other critical infrastructures in my Country, are all obvious instances of the reprehensible policies and practices of terrorism by these regimes. It not only reveals their untrustworthy positions and claims regarding the fight against terrorism but, to a larger extent, evinces the deeply-rooted impediments emanated from their hypocritical policies that hinder the international community’s efforts in achieving a world free of terrorism.

It is hypocritical and a flagrant arbitrary interpretation of the fight against terrorism wherein a specific Country, the godfather of ISIL and Al-Qaeda, labels the people who fight for the realization of their right to self-determination, ending occupation and foreign military intervention in their own territories as “terrorists” while also determining that the countries which support those oppressed peoples are also sponsors of terrorism. It is the woeful tale of the Middle East, with not only the destructive role of the foreign forces in our region but also the longest protracted occupation of Palestinian territory.

Mr. Chair,

While we are on the subject of the fight against terrorism, we shall not and cannot lose sight of the Unilateral Coercive Measures (UCMs). The Unilateral Coercive Measures, which are a flagrant violation of the fundamental principles of both international law and human rights, demonstrate a criminal intent akin to that of terrorists. These illegal measures that could destruct a whole or part of a population are not only tantamount to terrorism but also constitute as crimes against humanity. It goes without saying that the Unilateral Coercive Measures also impair the mobilization of appropriate resources required for combating terrorism and impede effective cooperation among Member States in this scourge.

In addition to its efforts at the national level, such as strengthening domestic legal frameworks, conducting effective investigations, prosecution as well as adjudication of terrorism-related cases and enhancing coordination among law enforcement authorities, the Islamic Republic of Iran has manifested its decisive role in line with its international legal obligations as it fights terrorism in the region and beyond by actively engaging in counter-terrorism efforts. In this regard, the Islamic Republic of Iran, upon the request of affected states, has assisted the latter in diminishing terrorist groups, e.g. ISIS and Al-Nusr,a and is currently in close cooperation with neighboring countries and other Member States in fighting terrorism. Furthermore, we are decisive in reinforcing our efforts.

Mr. Chair,

We reaffirm that the fight against terrorism should be in full compliance and in accordance with the fundamental principles of international law and the principles set forth with the Charter of the United Nations, in particular, sovereign equality, non-intervention and respect for territorial integrity. We emphasize the importance of national ownership as well as the primary role and responsibility of States in fighting terrorism while recognizing the pivotal role of the General Assembly in this process.

We underscore the commitments in the 7th review of the Global Counter Terrorism Strategy (GCTS) contained in resolution A/75/291. With regard to the general substance of the resolution, we are of the view that overemphasizing particular issues and ignoring some important ones would have a negative impact on the comprehensive and balanced character of the GCTS and distort its non-political image. We look forward to the 8th review of the GCTS negotiating process in 2023 in order to conclude an action-oriented and consensual resolution.

Mr. Chairman,

It is self-evident that if we are to succeed in countering terrorism, addressing the root causes of terrorism is one of the main prerequisites that should be prioritized. In our view, the impediments on the full realization of the right to development including the imposition of UCMs, illegitimate military presence as well as foreign military intervention and occupation constitute the main sources of terrorism and violent extremism conducive to terrorism.

As I conclude my remarks by reiterating my delegation’s commitment to fighting terrorism, I would also like to underline the need to focus on the finalization of the process on the draft comprehensive convention on international terrorism as well as convene a high-level conference under the auspices of the United Nations for this purpose in moving forward with our coordinated efforts as it is vital in order to ultimately send a unified and unambiguous signal to the perpetrators of terrorist acts. We look forward to the finalization of the draft convention which could be of practical utility for enhancing international counter-terrorism efforts.

I thank you.

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