The Security Council of the United Nations has instructed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to make “additional demands” from Tehran that have “no legal basis”, says an anti-war activist.
The comment comes as Iran’s President Mahmud Ahmadinejad has described the unilateral sanctions by the US and European Union on Tehran, over allegations that Iran‘s nuclear energy program may include a military aspect, as the most severe punitive measures ever taken against a nation.
On July 1, under US pressure, the EU imposed a new round of sanctions on Iran’s oil and banking sectors which had been approved by the bloc’s foreign ministers on January 23.
In March, the US administration approved new embargoes on Iranian crude that penalize other countries for buying or selling Iran’s oil. The sanctions took effect on June 28.
Iran has strongly refuted the US-led allegations, arguing that as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it has the right to develop and acquire nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
In addition, the IAEA has conducted countless inspections of Iran’s nuclear facilities, but never found any evidence of a diversion towards weaponization of its program.
Press TV has conducted an interview with Jim Brann of the UK’s Stop the War Coalition
to hear his opinions on the issue.
The video also offers the opinions of two other guests: political analyst and Tehran University Professor, Mohammad Marandi, and writer and radio host, Stephen Lendman.
The following is an approximate transcript of the interview.
Mr. Brann, according to the Westerners themselves specifically speaking, here the US and its European allies, the sanctions imposed are meant to force Iran, they say, to limit its nuclear program. The question is before we discuss whether that is going to happen, why should Iran be limiting its nuclear program when it says there is no proof of it developing nuclear arms; there is no evidence to suggest that?
I think legally the situation is quite clear that 38 years ago Iran signed the safeguard agreement with the international atomic energy agency regarding Iran’s declared nuclear facilities and for 38 years the IAEA inspectors have been visiting those declared nuclear facilities to ascertain whether there has been any diversion to military purposes and for 38 years those same inspectors have declared that there has been no diversion to military purposes and that’s the legal side of the process that’s going on
On top of that they have imposed a process for which I suggest there is no legal basis whatsoever whereby for example the Security Council of the United Nations has instructed the International Atomic Energy Agency at the same time as considering the matters related to the safeguard agreement [with the IAEA] also to consider completely separate matters for which there is no kind of agreement and I suggest there is no kind of power has ever been given either to the Security Council or to the, for example the Secretary General of the IAEA.
So it’s actually a matter of world significance whether Iran complies with these additional demands or not because it imposes a completely new order on the world if the Security Council can be used in this I would suggest illegal way. So Iran is quite correct to pursue what’s called its inalienable rights to the full use of nuclear power for peaceful purposes.
Jim Brann, we are hearing that the US is moving military reinforcements into the Persian Gulf region, we want to know what basically this is about. I just want to quote here the US navy according to one report moving a converted amphibious transport docking ship, known as the Ponce, into the Persian Gulf, the report says to serve as the Pentagon’s first floating staging base for military operations; as well as reports of the US increasing the number of fighter jets that are capable, the report says, of striking Iran. So do you think the US is actually seriously considering military action when it comes to Tehran’s issue?
I think if you look at the thing overall then certainly the United States’ presidents both Bush and Obama and many other top officials have constantly repeated in their favorite phrase “all options are on the table”.
It has to be pointed out that even theoretically includes nuclear attack on Iran that’s also [included] if all options are on the table but certainly the use of armed force they have explicitly said yes they will keep that option on the table and they are quite serious because that is as they see it their trump card.
On the other hand they know very well indeed that it’s, for example it’s ten and a half years since President Bush gave the axis of evil speech [State of the Union address on January 29, 2002] in which he said that the issue was to deal with Iraq, Iran and North Korea and they know perfectly well the disaster that they faced in Iraq. What they hoped for in Iraq certainly didn’t happen and they certainly didn’t mean to wait ten and a half years.
So they will understand the dangers; they know that for them there are dangers at every turn but no they haven’t ruled out; they certainly haven’t ruled out the military option although I suggest that these latest moves are probably a bluff because they keep saying that sanctions are the thing for the moment.