Every threat to peace in Middle East connected to Iran: Nikki Haley

ANI | Updated: Oct 19, 2017 05:15 IST

New York [U.S.A.] Oct 19 (ANI): United States Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Nikki Haley on Wednesday said that every threat to peace in Middle East was connected to Iran.

Addressing a Wednesday UN meeting, Haley said, "We can't talk about stability in the Middle East without talking about Iran; that's because nearly every threat to peace and security in the Middle East is connected to Iran's outlawed behaviour."

The meeting was supposed to discuss the revival Israeli-Palestinian peace process, but Haley used the platform to further United States President Donald Trump's new strategy on Iran.

Trump on October 13 declined to certify the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. Trump said the agreement with Iran and five other nations wasn't serving U.S. national security interests. He, however, stopped short of quitting the accord entirely.

Haley said, "The United States has now embarked on a course that attempts to address all aspects of Iran's destructive conduct, not just one aspect. It's critical that the international community do the same."

She further added that it would be foolish not to understand Iran's aggressive, destabilizing, and unlawful behaviour.

"As a council, we've adopted a dangerously shortsighted approach. Iran must be judged in totality of its aggressive, destabilizing, and unlawful behavior. To do otherwise would be foolish," said Haley.

She argued that Iran's "most threatening action" - the testing of ballistic missiles that can carry a nuclear warhead - have rendered it a rogue regime as dangerous as North Korea. "If it is wrong for North Korea to do this, why doesn't that same mentality apply to Iran?" she asked.

But, she also noted that the U.N. has acknowledged "a laundry list" of ways that Iran violates key U.N. resolutions pertaining to non-nuclear behavior, such as bans on weapons transfers to terrorists.

"The regime continues to play this council. Iran hides behind its assertion of technical compliance with the nuclear deal, while it brazenly violates the other limits on its behavior, and we have allowed them to get away with it. This must stop," Haley said.

The deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, was struck by Barack Obama in 2015 and agreed to lift sanctions on Iran in return for it not pursuing nuclear weapons.

After Trump refused to rectify Iran deal, British Prime Minister Theresa May, Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron issued a rare joint statement reiterating their belief in the agreement. It said the Iran deal was in their countries' "shared national security interest" and added they were "concerned by the possible implications" of Trump's announcement. (ANI)