18 January 2017 - Iran: The benefits of the agreement for Iran are beginning to be felt [fr]
Iran - Statement by Mr. François Delattre, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations - Security Council - 18 January 2017
On behalf of France, but also in my personal capacity, let me begin by paying special tribute to our colleague and friend Samantha Power for her outstanding work and her exemplary and tireless commitment to the values of the United Nations. Ambassador Power is an exceptional person, and I address to her from the bottom of my heart my friendship and most cordial personal and professional wishes for all the best in the next chapter in her life.
I would also like to congratulate our Italian colleague, Mr. Sebastiano Cardi, for having taken over from our Spanish colleague the role of facilitator of the implementation of resolution 2231 (2015).
Almost a year ago, on 16 January 2016, the Council received assurances from the International Atomic Energy Agency that Iran had successfully implemented the preliminary actions related to the nuclear field and specified in the agreement concluded on 14 July 2015 in Vienna between the E3+3 and Iran, paving the way for its implementation. The adoption of the Vienna agreement and its endorsement by the Council, through resolution 2231 (2015), marked an important step, as it strictly governed Iran’s nuclear activities over the life of the agreement, with the ultimate objective of re-establishing, in the end, confidence in the exclusively peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme. At that time, we welcomed this important achievement, with regard both to our sustained efforts aimed at non-proliferation and, more broadly, for stability in the region and for international peace and security.
Over the past year, the E3+3 countries have implemented their commitments in full. A very close follow-up of the implementation of Iran’s nuclear commitments has been put in place with a view to promoting transparency and efficiency. In that context, France fully supports the rigorous implementation of all the provisions of the agreement and the monitoring of the commitments of the parties over the long term. The International Atomic Energy Agency has a crucial role and has been diligently pursuing its verification and monitoring activities of Iran’s implementation of its nuclear commitments, in accordance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
I would also like to express our satisfaction with the recent publication of documents approved between the E3+3 and Iran in the framework of the Joint Commission established by the agreement. It contributes to the proper implementation of the agreement by increasing transparency towards the entire international community in the monitoring of the implementation of the Iranian commitments. It allows everyone to see the detail and modalities of verification of Iranian commitments under the Vienna agreement and to evaluate compliance with them in an informed manner.
In that context of rigor and transparency, we see that the benefits of the agreement for Iran are beginning to be felt. On the economic and commercial front, bilateral trade between France and Iran has increased by 200 per cent in value since January 2016. Iranian oil exports are continuously increasing. The French Government, in conjunction with its partners in the European Union, has continued its efforts to provide companies with the necessary information and guidance on the lifting of sanctions in order to support their return to Iran. We will continue along that path.
Furthermore, in the nuclear field and within the framework strictly determined by the agreement and in accordance with its provisions, our two countries have initiated discussions on the launching of bilateral cooperation in the area of security and in certain fields of magnetic confinement fusion. Finally, several requests for the transfer of goods whose export is governed by resolution 2231 (2015) have been submitted through the procurement channel established by the agreement and have been approved by the members of the Council. Nevertheless, the establishment of a climate of lasting confidence requires full respect for the commitments made not only under the Vienna agreement but also under resolution 2231 (2015), which endorsed it.
I would like to express our concern with regard to the information on Iran’s failure to comply with several important provisions of resolution 2231 (2015) over the past six months, which is contained in the full and factual report (S/2016/1136) that was presented to us. We remain very concerned about the information that has been detailed to us today. I am referring, of course, to the Iranian arms seizures in 2016, mentioned in the report, by Australia and the Combined Maritime Forces and by my own country, which constitute violations of annex B of resolution 2231 (2015). In the same vein, I am referring in particular to the information available to us on the arms transfers between Iran and Hizbullah, which are of great concern to us.
Furthermore, we are equally concerned about the information relating to the travel abroad of Major General Soleimani and Brigadier General Naqdi, even though they are subject to a travel ban decided by the Security Council and confirmed by resolution 2231 (2015 ). It is essential for regional stability and international security that Iran should refrain from any destabilizing activities.
Finally, we note the lack of information received on activities in the field of ballistic missiles designed to be capable of carrying nuclear weapons. We will remain vigilant about the continuation by Iran of any such activity, contrary to resolution 2231 (2015), and the spirit of the Vienna agreement, and contradicting the objective of consolidating regional stability.
In conclusion, I would like to stress the need to maintain our collective commitment to ensuring the long-term implementation of all the provisions of the Vienna agreement and of resolution 2231 (2015) in the same spirit of cooperation that favoured the conclusion of the agreement. The continuation of the diplomatic success that the conclusion of the Vienna agreement and the adoption of resolution 2231 (2015) represent requires strict and transparent compliance in the long term with all their provisions. France will therefore remain vigilant and will contribute to the vigilance of the Security Council throughout the process.