The UN Security Council convened to discuss the implementation of resolution 2231 following the Secretary-General’s ninth biannual report. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told the Council that its members had “a choice: stand for international peace and security… or let the arms embargo on the Islamic Republic of Iran expire [in October], betraying the UN’s mission and its finest ideals”. “Iran is already violating the arms embargo, even before its expiration date”, he remarked. “Imagine if Iranian activity were sanctioned, authorised by this group, if the restrictions were lifted… renewing the embargo will exert more pressure on Tehran to start behaving like a normal nation”. Later in the session, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif asserted that “the timetable for the removal of arms restrictions embodied in resolution 2231 is an inseparable part of the hard-won compromise enabling the JCPOA participants to finally agree on the overall package of the JCPOA and resolution 2231… the Council must not allow a single State to abuse the process”. Zarif further cautioned that “any new restriction by the Security Council is against the fundamental commitments made to the Iranian people. In such a scenario, Iran’s options, as already notified to the remaining JCPOA participants, will be firm. And the U.S. and any entity which may assist it – or acquiesce in its illegal behavior – will bear full responsibility”.
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