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Iran-U.S. Tensions: Statement of UN Chief, China & Russia; US Denies Visa to Iran’s Minister; Iran Designates US Forces as ‘Terrorists’

January 7, 2020 | By

Statement of UN Chief:

Amidst heightened tensions between Iran and United States (U.S.), the UN chief said that geopolitical tensions are at its highest this century.

“The New Year has begun with our world in turmoil. We are living in dangerous times,” UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres told mediapersons at UN on Monday.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres

He warned that even nuclear non-proliferation can no longer be taken for granted in this situation.

“Let us not forget the terrible human suffering caused by war. As always, ordinary people pay the highest price. It is our common duty to avoid it,” said he.

US Blames China & Russia:

The U.S. Mission to the United Nation has blamed China and Russia for blocking a UN Security Council statement condemning the December 31 attack on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad.

“Indeed, not allowing the United Nations Security Council to issue the most basic of statements underscoring the inviolability of diplomatic and consular premises once again calls the Council’s credibility into question. Such expressions of support should not be controversial or warrant courage,” U.S. Mission said.

Rusia’s Response:

Russia’s UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia told reporters that Moscow strongly condemns the attack on the American Embassy in Baghdad, but the UNSC statement that was “nearly ready” was not taking into account subsequent actions like the attack on the Baghdad airport that targeted Suleimani.

“We now have to talk about territorial integrity, about sovereignty of Iraq, about the need to de-escalate in the regions and prevent developments going down the drain, in the direction of a major conflict”, said he.

China Says Its’ Watching Situation Closely:

China’s Ambassador to the UN Zhang Jun told media persons that Beijing is following the Iran-U.S. situation very closely.

He said that the pressing task at the moment is to prevent the situation from further escalating and running out of control.

Regarding the U.S. pushing for a press statement on the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Iraq, Mr. Zhang said China does not accept the U.S. accusation.

Iran designates U.S. Forces ‘Terrorists’:

Iran’s Parliament passed a Bill on Tuesday designating all U.S. forces “terrorists” over the killing of a top Iranian military commander in a U.S. strike last week.

“Any aid to these forces, including military, intelligence, financial, technical, service or logistical, will be considered as cooperation in a terrorist act,” Iran’s Parliament said.

U.S. denies visa to Iran Foreign Minister to attend UN meet:

The United States has denied a visa to Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif that would have allowed him to attend a United Nations Security Council meeting in New York on Thursday, a U.S. reportedly official said.

Iran’s mission to the United Nations said: “We have seen the media reports, but we have not received any official communication from either the U.S. or the U.N. regarding Foreign Minister Zarif’s visa.”

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif [File Photo]

U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric declined to comment on the U.S. denial of a visa for Zarif.

Under the 1947 U.N. “headquarters agreement,” the United States is generally required to allow access to the United Nations for foreign diplomats. But Washington says it can deny visas for “security, terrorism and foreign policy” reasons.

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