Statement by H.E. Mr. Mohammad Khazaee
Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations
under the agenda item 33 entitled “Prevention of Armed Conflict”
Before the General Assembly of the United Nations
15 May2013, New York
Check against delivery
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
My delegation has asked for the floor to explain its position regarding the draft resolution contained in document A/67/L.63 before the vote.
Current crisis in Syria is gaining new dimensions, following further intensification of sectarian violence as well as growth of extremism and illegal acts by terrorist and extremist groups in this country;we have witnessed a new rounds of air strikes by the Israeli regime violating the territorial integrity of Syria. There is a growing concern that the operations of armed groups and spillover of such acts into other areas in the region will pose further threat and danger to the regional security and stability. This brings more than ever into picture our responsibilities for supporting a Syrian-led political dialogue for a peaceful resolution of the crisis and ending the violence inside Syria.
In view of my Delegation, the Draft Resolution is a deviation of all the efforts that are currently pursued at the international level for a peaceful solution. The draft, in its terms and spirit is also a deviation of the principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations and the international law. We cannot and do not agree with this draft for the following reasons:
- It is ironic that in the draft there is no reflection of recent Israeli regime attacks against Syria. The Israeli air strikes on 3rd and 5th May 2013 and other previous attacks were all blatant acts of aggression and a clear and serious violation of the norms and principles of the United Nations Charter including its Article 2 (4) on the prohibition of the use of force against any Member State. Nothing can justify the use of force and act of aggression against a sovereign state and the aggressor must be held accountable for any consequences stemming from these condemnable and illegitimate acts which endanger regional and international peace and security. I would like, here, to recall that the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in a statement issued on 7 May 2013 strongly condemned Israel’s recent acts of aggression against Syria, calling it a “grave violation of the international law as it infringes upon Syrian sovereignty and constitutes a blatant violation of the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.” We believe that such criminal and irresponsible act should be urgently and appropriately addressed by all relevant United Nations organs, including this august body.
- We believe that the United Nations has an important role to play in search for a peaceful solution to the Syrian crisis. In view of my delegation, the Draft Resolution, demonstratesa rather confrontational approach vis-à-vis Syria and in no way helps to bring the parties to a platform of dialogue, with a view of finding a peaceful way to resolve the crisis in a manner that would benefit the Syrian people as a whole.We need to help and facilitate engagement of the Syrian political groups with Syrian Government for a Syrian-lead political process.
- Despite some changes,the main elements in the final draft still supports the decisions taken outside the United Nations and include frameworks and mechanisms that do not correspond to the peaceful initiatives that the UN shouldpursue under agreed processes, includingthe framework oftheGeneva Action Group for Syria and the regional framework that we pursue with some countries in the region aimed at achieving the prescribed peaceful goals.The Draft contains a language that contradicts a comprehensive political process with the support of regional and international initiatives and the mandate of the Special Envoy. This is also interpreted as being in line with certain attempts to alter or to impose illegitimate demands on the mandate of the Special Envoy. This would only undermine the Special Representative and other major international and regional efforts in seeking a complete cessation of the violence in Syria at the very first place. We sincerely hope that Mr. Ebrahimi would stay resolute in his arduous mission.
- The“acknowledgment” referred to in the draft intrudes on the provisions of the Charter regarding the respect for the sovereignty and integrity of Member States. It also represents a dangerous precedent that violates the most elementary principles of the international law. My delegation is not in a position to welcome or endorse the decisions where their letters and sprits go against the provisions of the Charter of the United Nations.The United Nations should remain an Organization of principles governed by rules of law and not influenced by decisions taken elsewhere.
- On the issue of the use of chemical weapons in Syria, the Islamic Republic of Iran as a main victim of the present-day use of chemical weapons, with a heartfelt sense, condemns the use of such weapons. It now becoming more clear that certain elements of the Syrian armed opposition groups used chemical weapons resulted in the death and the injury of a number of innocent civilians in that country as testified by the UN Human Rights Council appointee Mrs. Carla Del Ponte.
- The draft is not explicit in recognizing the responsibilities of the armed groupsin their recourse to atrocious act and violence. We believe, it is important that the decisions by the UN General Assembly to be objectiveand balanced.
- The Draft violates the authority of the General Assembly where particularly it makes implicitly references to Rome Statute on the International Criminal Court, without legitimate legal basis.
- Finally, it is important that any proposal before this Assembly should be based on the broad consultations and consent of the wider membership. It seems that the drafters did not heed the substantive proposals and amendments presented by the representatives of others regional groupings.
In conclusion I would like to point out that at this stage, what is important is to prevent any slowdown in the international efforts to resolve the conflict in Syria through peaceful means. The UN Member States should, with the greatest sense of responsibility, work hand in hand to find balanced formula for the resolution of the conflict.In this sense we welcome the initiative of having the Geneva II Conference and hope that it would succeed in bringing a peaceful solution to the crisis. After all, our Organization is about and should remain dedicated in achieving diplomatic resolutionsto political crisis including the prevailing situation in Syria.
Thank you Mr. President.