TEHRAN- Iran’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations on Tuesday urged the international community to exert pressure on the Israeli regime to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).Zahra Ershadi emphasized how nuclear weapons posed “an existential threat to humanity.”
“This global cause of insecurity should have brought the international community together. Instead, we are witness to the ongoing escalation of political and military tensions, including the continuous threat to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear countries,” she told the annual meeting of the UN Disarmament Commission.
The diplomat drew attention to the Islamic Republic’s initiative at the UN to establish a zone in West Asia from free from weapons of mass destruction (WMDs).
“The Israeli regime is a vivid obstacle to this noble goal. It possesses all types of WMD and threatens to use them against the regional countries,” Ershadi warned.
Israel, which follows a policy of deliberate ambiguity regarding its nuclear weapons program, is thought to possess 200 to 400 nuclear warheads, making it the sole holder of non-conventional weapons in West Asia.
Israel has refused to allow inspections of its military nuclear installations or ratify the NPT.
The regime has also killed at least seven Iranian nuclear experts and carried out various sabotage operations against the Islamic Republic’s nuclear facilities throughout the years.
“Furthermore, this regime has committed various terrorist attacks against nuclear scientists and has also initiated different sabotage attacks against nuclear facilities,” Ershadi likewise pointed out.
“Therefore, it (Tel Aviv) must be forced to join all related instruments, including the NPT, without any precondition and as a non-nuclear party must place all its nuclear facilities and activities under the comprehensive safeguards of the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency),” she insisted.
Ershadi’s speech is as follows:
I congratulate you, other bureau members, and the chairs of the working committees on your election. My delegation aligns itself with the statement made on behalf of the NAM by Indonesia. The full version of my statement will be submitted later.
We note with satisfaction the convening of the UNDC substantive session after three years of delay in the raw, just because the Host country has refused to meet its obligations to issue the visas.
The world is facing multiple and interlinking global threats and challenges emanating from WMDs, including nuclear weapons, posing an existential threat to humanity.
This global cause of insecurity should have brought the international community together. Instead, we are witness to the ongoing escalation of political and military tensions, including the continuous threat to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear countries.
There is a renewed and expanded nuclear arms race in which outer space, cyber technologies, artificial intelligence, and new delivery systems have decisively increased the threat of nuclear weapons.
In this way, hundreds of billions of dollars are being spent to replace and upgrade nuclear arsenals. The NWSs to varying degrees are engaged in a qualitative arms race, while tensions among them are mounting.
They have put aside this commitment and no longer intend to honor it.
For instance, the US 2022 budget request retains or even increases the budget for every nuclear weapons program proposed by the Trump Administration.
Or the declared review of the United Kingdom’s nuclear weapons policy, includes increasing its stockpile ceiling of nuclear weapons by up to 44 percent, lowering the threshold for a possible use of such weapons, and reducing transparency about its nuclear weapons.
These facts, together with the demise of key nuclear arms control agreements, erosion of the international arms control architecture, and more importantly, the lack of concrete action in implementing the legally binding obligations of the NWSs on nuclear disarmament and a lack of such a prospect in the future, severely endanger international peace and security.
All in all, the international community needs the political will of the NWSs to develop an updated disarmament action plan within a specific timeframe. Such a plan should contain, as a first step, halting research, development, testing, and production of nuclear weapons and delivery systems.
The NWSs should also declare that they will not design, develop, or produce new nuclear weapons, or modify or modernize existing warheads to add military capabilities.
In this regard, it is imperative to take steps to eliminate any role of nuclear weapons in their military and security concepts, doctrines, and policies.
These accomplishments ought to be followed by denouncing and prohibiting any use of nuclear weapons and must be complemented by the destruction of the nuclear arsenals.
Declaring that “a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought” must be followed by action.
All of these imperatives can and should be accomplished through a comprehensive convention the negotiations of which should commence as early as possible in the CD.
Regarding the Establishment of a Middle East Zone Free of WMDs, Iran, as the first country initiating such an idea in the UN, underlines that the 1995 NPT RevCon resolution on the Middle East, as well as other relevant decisions on the subject, remain valid and should be implemented until the objective of the establishment of a zone free of WMDs in the Middle East is achieved.
In this vein, the implementation of UNGA decision 73/546 is without prejudice to the validity of the aforesaid resolution as well as the decisions made therein and shall not be construed as their replacement.
However, the Israeli regime is a vivid obstacle to this noble goal. It possesses all types of WMD and threatens to use them against the regional countries.
Furthermore, this regime has committed various terrorist attacks against nuclear scientists and has also initiated different sabotage attacks against nuclear facilities.
Therefore, it must be forced to join all related instruments, including the NPT, without any precondition and as a non-nuclear party must place all its nuclear facilities and activities under the comprehensive safeguards of the IAEA.
Iran is of the view that outer space and other celestial bodies are humanity’s common heritage and must be used only for peaceful purposes as well as for the benefit of all countries.
The prevention of an arms race in outer space would avert a severe threat to international peace and security.
Therefore, further measures, including a legally binding instrument with appropriate and effective verification provisions, shall be developed timely by the CD.
Given the obvious realities, we are deeply concerned, by the US activities and those of other actors, over the increasing threat of weaponizing outer space, including the negative implications of the development and deployment of anti-ballistic missile defense systems and the pursuit of advanced military technologies capable of being deployed in outer space which has, inter alia, contributed to the further weakening of an international climate conducive to the promotion of disarmament and the strengthening of international security.
On another note, some delegations particularly the Saudi Arabia raised an unwarranted concern and allegations about Iran’s nuclear program and its defensive missile program.
Furthermore, it is unfortunate to note that to justify its illogical and unprincipled positions which are against its international obligations, the UK has irresponsibly referred to the so-called threat of Iran, while the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear activities, on numerous occasions, has been confirmed by the IAEA.
We should not be distracted from the real threats, that is the Israeli nuclear weapon program at the regional level and the very existence of the WMDs at the global level.
I hope that the resumption of the UNDC substantive session will lead us to put an end to all these threats. Iran is ready to play its role in this regard.
Original News : https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/471439/Iran-urges-international-community-to-pressure-Israel-to-join