Iran has underlined the need for a new international legal instrument to counter the increasing wave of cross-border cyber attacks in the world. Alireza Miryousefi, the head of the press office for the Iranian mission to the UN, and Hossein Gharibi, the counselor of the mission, said in an opinion piece published on the Christian Science Monitor on Thursday that the world “needs a new international legal instrument on cyberspace, in light of the new waves of trans-border cyber attacks that have become a disturbing aspect of international relations in the 21st century.” The two Iranian diplomats also described cyber attacks as a global “concern” and a “new phenomenon in the history of modern warfare,” which “threaten global peace and security and require new norms under international law and principles of the UN Charter.” The article stressed the need for a “collective international effort” to combat the so-called digital battlefield. As the current chair of the Non-Aligned Movement and a responsible member of the international community whose important industrial and economic sectors have been targeted by “state-sponsored” cyber attacks, Iran is strongly committed to the goal of reinforcing international binding legal rules dealing with cyber security, the Iranian diplomats stated.
They said that Iran has never conducted a cyber attack against any country, including the United States, or retaliated such “illegal” moves, while Washington supported cyber offensives like the Stuxnet attack against the Islamic Republic.Iran has been the target of several cyber attacks over the past few years. In June 2012, a report by the Washington Post said the US and the Israeli regime had cooperated in creating the computer virus Flame to spy on Iran. US National Security Agency, the CIA and the Israeli military worked together to create the Flame virus, the paper added. In addition, the New York Times also revealed in the same month that US President Barack Obama secretly ordered a cyber attack with the Stuxnet computer virus against Iran to sabotage the country’s nuclear energy program. AR/HSN/MA