US accuses Iran of defying UN resolution, calls for tough bans
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US accuses Iran of defying UN resolution, calls for tough bans

In a letter to the 15-member council, acting US Ambassador to the United Nations Jonathan Cohen said Iran tested a medium-range ballistic missile on Dec. 1, 2018, and attempted to place satellites in orbit on Jan. 15 and Feb. 5. “Iran has carried out these three launches in defiance of the expressed will of the UN Security Council, and such provocations continue to destabilize the entire Middle East region,” Cohen claimed. Cohen’s letter called upon the council to “join us in imposing real consequences on Iran for its flagrant defiance of the council’s demands and bring back tougher international restrictions to deter Iran’s missile program.” The US claims about Iran’s violation come as Washington turned into a “gross violator of the resolution” after unlawfully leaving the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, and imposing unilateral sanctions against Tehran. Resolution 2231 terminated the provisions of previous UN resolutions against Iran, some of which had imposed restrictions on Iranian missile activities. Such activities are not prohibited under Resolution 2231, which merely "calls on" Iran “to refrain from any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons.” Tehran has always emphasized that it has no nuclear warheads and that none of its missiles have been designed to carry nuclear weapons. In remarks made on Thursday, IRGC deputy commander Brigadier General Hossein Salami said the Islamic Republic is increasing its military power in order to counter any type of threat posed by its adversaries. "Today the Islamic Republic has learned that it must respond to the enemy's war on the Islamic Revolution ... with the language of force and in the battleground," he said. He also noted that the country’s defense power is being strengthened with a rapid and unstoppable pace. Brigadier General Kiumars Heidari, the commander of the Iranian Army’s ground forces, also said on Thursday that the country’s military is more prepared than ever, and has upgraded all its equipment based on the state-of-the-art technologies. “If the enemies of the Islamic Republic of Iran make any stupid move, our response will be strong and crushing,” he noted. “Today the Iranian armed forces, the Army, the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and other military forces are stronger than ever, and the enemies would be eliminated in a very short time if make any stupid move,” General Heidari warned. His warning came after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued another military threat against Iran, this time saying that the regime’s navy could take action against Iranian oil shipments. Speaking at a graduation ceremony of Israeli navy cadets in Haifa on Wednesday, Netanyahu claimed that Iran was trying to “covertly” ship fuel over maritime routes to “circumvent” unilateral US sanctions. “To the extent that these attempts widen, the navy will have a more important role in blocking these Iranian actions,” Netanyahu threatened. The Israeli premier also urged the international community “to stop Iran’s attempts to circumvent the sanctions by sea, and of course, by any (other) means.” This is while the international community has been critical of Washington’s withdrawal in May 2018 from the nuclear deal and the ensuing re-imposition of the economic sanctions, which had been lifted under the nuclear deal. Speaking on the sidelines of an anti-Iran meeting in Warsaw last month, Netanyahu openly called for “war with Iran.” In addition, he frequently threatens to target Iranian military advisers in Syria, where they are helping the Arab country in its fight against Israeli-backed militants. In August 2018, the Israeli prime minister threatened Iran with “atomic annihilation” right from the regime’s secretive atomic weapons facility. Iranian officials have repeatedly warned Israel against carrying out the threats, saying a crushing response awaits the aggressors.

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