Iran rejects ‘biased’ UN report on its missile tests
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Iran rejects ‘biased’ UN report on its missile tests

Tehran says document ignores US failure to abide by landmark nuclear deal; Berlin also monitoring regime’s activity

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, left, briefs the media as Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan listens after unveiling the surface-to-surface Fateh-313, or Conqueror, missile in a ceremony marking Defense Industry Day, Iran, August 22, 2015. (Iranian Presidency Office via AP)
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani, left, briefs the media as Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan listens after unveiling the surface-to-surface Fateh-313, or Conqueror, missile in a ceremony marking Defense Industry Day, Iran, August 22, 2015. (Iranian Presidency Office via AP)

Iran on Friday dismissed as biased a confidential report by United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon that condemned Tehran’s missile tests, urging Ban Ki-moon to produce “a fair and realistic report.”

The Iranian reaction came a day after Reuters reported that Ban found Tehran’s missile tests to be inconsistent “with the constructive spirit” of the landmark 2015 nuclear deal. The deal saw the Islamic republic halt its atomic activity in return for the easing of years of crippling international economic sanctions.

Reuters on Friday quoted an Iranian Foreign Ministry source as telling Iran’s semi-official Tasnim news agency that, “I suggest that Mr. Ban give a fair report … in which he also mentions America is not fulfilling its commitments under the deal.”

While Ban’s report “stopped short” of saying the missile launches were a “violation” of the UN Security Council resolution of the nuclear deal, Reuters said, it did leave it to the Security Council to make a final decision on the issue. The Council will discuss Ban’s report on July 18, Reuters said.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the United Nations in New York on September 26, 2015. (AFP/DOMINICK REUTER)
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the United Nations in New York on September 26, 2015. (AFP/Dominick Reuter)

Germany also said Friday it is closely watching Iran’s attempts to procure nuclear and missile technology, after German intelligence agencies reported dozens of cases last year.

Germany’s domestic intelligence agency said last month that Iran’s nuclear procurement efforts in the country remained “at a quantitatively high level” in 2015 and attempts to acquire missile technology showed an “upward trend.”

A separate report by the domestic intelligence agency for North Rhine-Westphalia, published Monday, stated that counter-espionage officials had spotted 141 procurement attempts in the state last year — twice as many as in 2014.

German Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Schaefer said Friday that the intelligence report made for “unpleasant” reading, but noted that it covered a period before the deal with Iran came into force on Jan. 16, 2016.

Schaefer said that Germany and its partners would work to ensure Iran abides by the agreement signed in Vienna last July.

Iran showcases what it claims are parts of its newly received S-300 missile defense batteries in Tehran on April 17, 2016. (Fars News Agency)
Iran showcases what it claims are parts of its newly received S-300 missile defense batteries in Tehran on April 17, 2016. (Fars News Agency)

“We are already talking to our partners in New York and elsewhere, and we won’t hesitate to discuss this with Tehran,” he said.

Referring to Iran’s ballistic missile testing last fall, Schaefer said it could be the result of political infighting inside the country.

“There are considerable forces which can exert power on the domestic structures in Iran and for whom the policies of the president and the foreign minister are a thorn in their side,” he said.

“They may be tempted to try to undermine and torpedo the Vienna agreement on the nuclear program and the resulting normalization of relations with us and the West as a whole.”

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