Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salami
Photo: Reuters

Iran demands UN action over 'nuclear terrorism'

Tehran's FM urges official Security Council investigation into 'acts of terror' targeting nuclear facilities, scientists and cyber infrastructure

Iranian officials demanded Friday that the UN Security Council take action against the countries that killed Iranian scientists and launched cyber attacks against its atomic research facilities.


Without naming Israel or the United States, which Iran has accused of the killings of four nuclear scientists, Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salami said Iran had been a victim of "nuclear terrorism."


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Salehi said the Security Council, which has passed four rounds of sanctions against Iran's uranium enrichment, should stop using nuclear weapons fears "as a pretext to act as a legislative body."


The council should "utilize its authority to act against those states undertaking cyber attacks and sabotage in the peaceful nuclear facilities and kill nuclear scientists of other countries," Salehi told a UN General Assembly.  



Iran believes agents working with foreign intelligence services including the CIA and the Mossad were behind the assassination of several of its nuclear scientists.


The United States has denied involvement in the hits, while Israel has refused to comment on them.


According to US media, the United States and Israel were behind the Stuxnet computer virus which temporarily crippled Iran's uranium enrichment at its Natanz plant.


'Cyber attacks, hits violate UN Charter'

According to the Iranian FM, Tehran considers nuclear terrorism to include attacking or sabotaging its nuclear facilities, and that as such, it places "a special importance" on preventing them.


Iran said the use or threat of nuclear weapons with the intent to cause death, injury or damage to property or the environment was also deemed nuclear terrorism.


"As a country (where) not only (its) nationals have been targeted by terrorist groups, but also its nuclear facilities have been subject to cyber attacks and foreign-backed sabotage, we attach special importance to the need to prevent nuclear terrorism," Salehi said.


Scene of hit on Iranian nuclear scientist (Archives)


"All states have legal obligation(s) to refrain from any attack or threat of attack against peaceful nuclear facilities, whether operational or under construction, or involvement, directly or indirectly, in acts of sabotage in such facilities," he stated.


Addressing the meeting as chair of the Nonaligned Movement (NAM), which comprises 120 mainly developing countries, Salehi said the group "Reaffirms the inviolability of peaceful nuclear activities and that any attack or threat of attack against peaceful nuclear facilities – operational or under construction – constitutes a grave violation of international law, principles and purposes of the UN Charter and regulations of the IAEA."


Salehi said NAM recognizes "the urgent need" for a new international legal instrument "prohibiting attacks or threat of attacks on nuclear facilities devoted to peaceful uses of nuclear energy."


"Nuclear terrorism should (not) be used as a pretext to violate the inalienable right to peaceful uses of nuclear science and technology," he said. "Any use of a nuclear weapon, whether by states or terrorists, would be catastrophic."


For nearly 10 years, Britain, France, Germany, the United States, Russia and China have negotiated unsuccessfully with Iran to persuade it to halt its nuclear program in exchange for political and economic incentives.


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu drew a "red line" for Iran's nuclear program on Thursday, despite a US refusal to set an ultimatum, saying Tehran will be on the brink of making nuclear weapon in less than a year.


Iran responded by declaring it was strong enough to defend itself and that it reserved the right to retaliate with full force against any attack.


Reuters and AFP contributed to this report



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פרסום ראשון: 09.28.12, 23:17
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