US, UK, France Poised to Seek New Sanctions Against Iran

US, UK and France say they will seek new sanctions against Iran if it does not comply with existing UN Security Council resolutions demanding that it end uranium-enriching activities and come to the negotiating table. Discussion of new sanctions resolution could begin early next year.

Japan's U.N. ambassador, who heads the Security Council Sanctions Committee on Iran, briefed the council on violations of existing resolutions that have taken place during the last three months.

Later, Britain's U.N. Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant outlined those violations to reporters.

"This report set out a pattern of violations by Iran of Security Council resolutions -- including the illegal export, two illegal exports, of shipments of arms from Iran in direct contradiction of resolution 1747," he said.  "And if you add this together with the continued uranium enrichment activities of Iran, in violation of Security Council resolutions -- of Iran's failure to answer questions to the IAEA about its weaponization activities, the revelation of a secret enrichment site at Qom, and Iran's rejection of the offer over the Tehran Nuclear Research Reactor -- then I think you can see there is clearly this pattern of violations of international obligations and an unwillingness of Iran to negotiate seriously with the international community over the nuclear issue," he said.

He said ministers in the group known as the P5 plus 1 - the five permanent members of the Security Council plus Germany - would be making their assessment in the coming weeks and that if it is negative, he would expect the council to take up the sanctions discussion in early January.

Iran denies Western charges that it is seeking to build nuclear weapons under cover of a civilian energy program.  It has not complied with Security Council resolutions demanding it cease its enrichment activities.

French Ambassador Gerard Araud told the council that Iran is not respecting its international obligations and that there "is no longer any reason to wait" on pursuing new sanctions.  

"France considers that the time has come to increase this pressure," he said.

U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice told the council that the United States is committed to a dual-track approach regarding Iran -- engagement and pressure.

"But engagement cannot be a one-way street.  Iran must conclusively demonstrate a similar willingness to engage constructively and address the serious issues associated with its nuclear program," she stressed.  "The international community stands firm in its conviction that Iran must comply with its international obligations.  Should Iran continue to fail to meet its obligations, the international community will have to consider further actions," she said.

She told reporters that Iran's violations need to be treated "urgently and seriously" and that the United States is ready to turn up the pressure.  She said "time is short" and that the international community has not seen the kind of response from Iran that the United States thinks would be in Iran's best interest.

But Russia and China -- the other two permanent, veto-wielding members of the Security Council, and who have oil and trade ties with Iran -- were much more restrained in their remarks.

Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said the parties need to remain "patient, calm and not emotional,"  while China's ambassador, Zhang Yesui, said there is still space for talks, noting that it "may require more time and patience on our part."

Asked whether those remarks signaled a lack of unity among the five permanent Security Council members, Ambassador Rice said she did not think so.

"The P5 has demonstrated repeatedly, most recently in Vienna at the IAEA Board of Governors, both unity and resolve with respect to Iran's nuclear program and the need for Iran to adhere to its international obligations.  They both reaffirmed that today."

But whether there is unity among the major players, diplomats say a possible new sanctions resolution will take several weeks, if not a couple months, to negotiate.

This forum has been closed.
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugeesi
Henry Ridgwell
October 08, 2015 8:02 PM
Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugees

Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Iraqi-Kurdish Teachers Vow to Continue Protest

Sixteen people were injured when police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse teachers and other public employees who took to the streets in Iraq’s Kurdish north, demanding their salaries from the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG). VOA’s Dilshad Anwar, in Sulaimaniya, caught up with protesting teachers who say they have not been paid for three months. Parke Brewer narrates his report.

Video Syrian Village Community Faces Double Displacement in Lebanon

Driven by war from their village in southwestern Syria, a group of families found shelter in Lebanon, resettling en masse in a half-built university to form one of the biggest settlements of its kind in Lebanon. Three years later, however, they now face being kicked out and dispersed in a country where finding shelter as a refugee can be especially tough. John Owens has more for VOA from the city of Saida, also known as Sidon.

Video Bat Colony: Unusual Tourist Attraction in Texas

The action hero Batman might be everyone’s favorite but real bats hardly get that kind of adoration. Put more than a million of these creatures of the night together and it only evokes images of horror. Sarah Zaman visited the largest urban bat colony in North America to see just how well bat and human get along with each other.

Video Device Shows Promise of Stopping Motion Sickness

It’s a sickening feeling — the dizziness, nausea and vomiting that comes with motion sickness. But a device now being developed could stop motion sickness by suppressing certain signals in the brain. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.

Video Making a Mint

While apples, corn, and cranberries top the list of fall produce in the US, it’s also the time to harvest gum, candy, and toothpaste—or at least the oil that makes them minty fresh. Erika Celeste reports from South Bend, Indiana on the mint harvest.

Video Activists Decry Lagos Slum Demolition

Acting on a court order, authorities in Nigeria demolished a slum last month in the commercial capital, Lagos. But human rights activists say the order was illegal, and the community was razed to make way for a government housing project. Chris Stein has more from Lagos.

Video TPP Agreed, But Faces Stiff Opposition

President Barack Obama promoted the Trans-Pacific Partnership on Tuesday, one day after 12 Pacific Rim nations reached the free trade deal in Atlanta. The controversial pact that would involve about 40 percent of global trade still needs approval by lawmakers in respective countries. Zlatica Hoke reports Obama is facing strong opposition to the deal, including from members of his own party.

Video Ukranian Artist Portrays Putin in an Unusual Way

As Russian President Vladimir Putin was addressing the United Nations in New York last month, he was also being featured in an art exhibition in Washington. It’s not a flattering exhibit. It’s done by a Ukrainian artist in a unique medium. And its creator says it’s not only a work of art - it’s a political statement. VOA’s Tetiana Kharchenko has more.

Video Nano-tech Filter Cleans Dirty Water

Access to clean water is a problem for hundreds of millions of people around the world. Now, a scientist and chemical engineer in Tanzania (in East Africa) is working to change that by creating an innovative water filter that makes dirty water safe. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.

Video Demand Rising for Organic Produce in Cambodia

In Cambodia, where rice has long been the main cash crop, farmers are being encouraged to turn to vegetables to satisfy the growing demand for locally produced organic farm products. Daniel de Carteret has more from Phnom Penh.

Video Botanists Grow Furniture, with Pruning Shears

For something a bit out of the ordinary to furnish your home, why not consider wooden chairs, crafted by nature, with a little help from some British botanists with an eye for design. VOA’s Jessica Berman reports.

VOA Blogs