October 15, 2020 — New York
American Jewish Committee, criticizing the UN Security Council’s failure to extend the international arms embargo on Iran, proclaimed Sunday, October 18, as “a profoundly sad and dangerous day for global security.”
“Thanks to UN Security Council inaction, as of October 18 Iran will be free to legally buy and sell conventional weapons without violating the JCPOA (2015 Iranian nuclear deal) or UN restrictions,” said AJC CEO David Harris. “No doubt, Iran’s neighbors and countries far beyond the Middle East will suffer the consequences of the Security Council’s abject failure to call out the true nature of the regime in Tehran and contain it.”
Under the JCPOA, the arms embargo, first imposed in 2007, was given an expiration date of October 18, 2020.
A U.S. proposal to extend the embargo was rejected by the Security Council on August 14. Only the Dominican Republic voted with the U.S. in favor, while Russia and China voted against the measure, and 11 countries, including Britain, France and Germany, abstained.
“China and Russia now are very happy. These two countries have no hesitation or compunction about openly selling weapons to Iran,” said Harris, adding that “North Korea, Venezuela and Turkey are similarly gleeful.”
“The tragic reality is Iran today, despite major economic challenges, is more dangerous than ever as a regional and global actor,” said Harris. “Iran’s tentacles are firmly in Iraq, in Syria, in Lebanon, and in Gaza, trying to get into the West Bank, and, either directly or through its terrorist proxy, Hezbollah, are very active in Arica, in Europe, in Asia, in Latin America, and continually attempting in the United States.”