Israel’s ambassador to the UN wrote a stinging protest letter to United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon Tuesday over Iran’s appointment as rapporteur of the General Assembly’s Committee on Disarmament and International Security, a body that deals with all matters pertaining to disarmament — including nuclear weapons.
“It is inconceivable that a state under Security Council sanctions for suspected WMD proliferation activities would be allowed to hold this position,” Ambassador Ron Prosor wrote. “Permitting Iran to serve on the UN’s leading disarmament committee is like appointing a drug lord CEO of a pharmaceutical company.”
Iran was appointed to the position last week and its representative will relay information relating to the committee’s proceedings during the UN’s 68th session, spanning 2013-14, to the General Assembly.
“Iran’s appointment erodes the UN’s legitimacy and its ability to promote arms control and disarmament as well as, preserve global peace and security,” Prosor added. “Rather than provide a global stage for Iran’s defiance and deception, the UN should shine a spotlight on the regime’s ongoing pursuit of nuclear weapons and its support for terrorism across the globe.”
The committee has no authority to make binding decisions, but is in charge of drafting resolutions on the subject of international security, many of which are later debated and often accepted by the General Assembly. It also cooperates with the Conference on Disarmament, based in Geneva, and the UN’s Disarmament Commission.
In July, when Iran applied for the rapporteur position, Prosor said in a statement that “allowing Iran to be on the UN committee dealing with nuclear disarmament and weapons proliferation is like inviting Assad, the Syrian dictator responsible for the death of 100,000 of his own people, to be the head of the population census bureau.”
Aaron Kalman contributed to this report.