October 18, 2017 / 7:21 PM / 2 years ago

On Iran, U.S. asks U.N. Security Council: 'Where's the outrage?'

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United States accused Iran on Wednesday of violating several United Nations Security Council resolutions, saying it would no longer “turn a blind eye” and asking the 15-member council of Tehran’s behaviour: “where’s the outrage?”

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley delivers remarks at a security council meeting at U.N. headquarters during the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, U.S. September 21, 2017. REUTERS/Stephanie Keith

U.S. President Donald Trump struck a blow on Friday against a 2015 Iran nuclear deal when he refused to formally certify that Tehran is complying with the accord curbing its nuclear programme, even though international inspectors say it is.

“Judging Iran by the narrow confines of the nuclear deal misses the true nature of the threat. Iran must be judged in totality of its aggressive, destabilising, and unlawful behaviour. To do otherwise would be foolish,” U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told the Security Council.

Most sanctions on Iran were lifted at the start of 2016 under the nuclear deal brokered by world powers and enshrined in a U.N. Security Council resolution. The resolution still subjects Tehran to a U.N. arms embargo and other restrictions that are technically not part of the nuclear deal.

“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 behaviour,” Haley told the Security Council.

“Where’s the outrage of this council?” she said. “The United States will not turn a blind eye to these violations.”

During a Security Council meeting traditionally focussed on Israel and the Palestinians, Haley spoke exclusively about Iran, leading her Russian counterpart Vassily Nebenzia to later ask: “Perhaps they confused the agenda item?”

The U.N. chief is required to report every six months to the council on violations of the remaining sanctions and curbs on Iran. Concerns have been raised that Iran may have violated the arms embargo and that ballistic missile launches were “not consistent with the constructive spirit” of the nuclear deal.

Haley also accused Iran of violating Security Council resolutions on Lebanon and Yemen.

No council members have proposed taking any action against Iran. Diplomats say veto-powers Russia and China were unlikely to agree to more measures.

“If we had hegemonic ambitions the nuclear deal would never have been reached. The new U.S. administration approach and the recent dangerous strategy towards the deal and Iran runs counter to the will of the international community,” Iran’s U.N. Ambassador Gholamali Khoshroo told the Security Council.

Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Editing by David Gregorio

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