February 15, 2020
The US mission to the UN has said that Iran continues its “program of terrorism, nuclear extortion, and destabilizing behavior.”
In a media note on the United Nations Yemen Panel of Experts Report, the mission reiterated that Iran attacked Saudi oil facilities in September last year.
“It was an attack not only against a sovereign state but against the global economy as well,” it said in a statement.
“The evidence pointed to Iran, despite unsubstantiated claims of responsibility by Houthi rebels in Yemen.”
It said the report of the panel of experts “confirms the truth that the Houthis could not have launched such an attack, reinforcing the conclusion of the United States, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom that Iran bears responsibility.”
“Since its September attack, Iran has continued its program of terrorism, nuclear extortion, and destabilizing behavior. Iranian-backed militias have launched 12 rocket attacks against Iraqi military facilities hosting US service members and incited the December 31 assault on the US embassy in Baghdad,” said the mission.
It said that following the panel’s conclusions, the Security Council now has less than 36 weeks until the October expiration of the UN arms embargo to renew sanctions forbidding the sale of certain weapons systems to Iran.
“Iran’s intention to use its short-range missiles is clear, as Saudi oil-field workers and their families can attest.”
The mission warned that Iran’s possible use of more powerful weapons – should sanctions be lifted – is a matter of vital concern for the international community.
“Iran will continue to threaten regional peace and security absent effective action to counter its aggressive behavior, and the United States will accordingly work vigorously with other members of the United Nations to bring Iran into a place of peaceful and productive relations with its neighbors,” it said.
The report from the independent panel of experts, which reports twice a year to the Security Council on the implementation of sanctions related to the conflict in Yemen, has said that “despite their claims to the contrary, the Houthis did not launch the attacks on the Saudi oil facilities on September 14.
The Houthis “continue to receive military support in the form of assault rifles, rocket propelled grenade launchers, anti tank guided missiles, as well as more sophisticated cruise missile systems,” the report found.
“Some of those weapons have technical characteristics similar to arms manufactured in Iran,” it said.