Israel hinders efforts aimed at nuke-free Middle East: Iran
Tue Apr 2, 2013 7:28AM
The Israeli regime is widely believed to be the only possessor of nuclear weapons in the Middle East. The regime reportedly maintains between 200 and 400 atomic warheads, but under its policy of so-called nuclear ambiguity, it has never denied nor confirmed its possession of the weapons of mass destruction.An Iranian envoy to the UN has reiterated Tehran’s proposal for a Middle East free of nuclear arms, blaming the Israeli regime for hampering efforts to cleanse the entire region of all nuclear weapons. Pointing to Israeli bids to oppose and obstruct an Iranian initiative to rid the Middle East of all atomic warheads, Iran’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Gholam-Hossein Dehqani said in a Monday address to the UN Disarmament Commission (UNDC) meeting that the Islamic Republic and all Arab nations have declared their willingness to partake in a conference on eliminating all nuclear arms in the region without preconditions. Dehqani further pointed to Iran’s insistence that all UN amendments for freeing the Middle East and the world from nuclear arms must be implemented, emphasizing that the eradication of all atomic weapons across the globe is the only ultimate guarantee for removing this threat. The Iranian official also stressed that since the US atomic bombing of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, nuclear disarmament has remained one of the greatest global priorities and the UN General Assembly called for the abolishment of atomic bombs in a resolution at its first meeting on January 24, 1946.
Dehqani expressed regret, however, that “the maintenance of thousands of nuclear arms in the weapon depots of nuclear powers” on their own soil as well as in the territories of their allies “threatens international peace and security and the existence of human civilization.”He further pointed to major concerns about the continued allocation of billions of dollars by countries that possess nuclear weapons for the testing and development of a new generation of atomic arms, as well as constructing new facilities to manufacture such weapons of mass destruction. The Iranian envoy also pointed to the massive annual expenditures for the production and development of nuclear arms by some of the countries that possess atomic warheads and said there are major concerns regarding the expansion of nuclear military programs by these countries. Calling for the total eradication of such nuclear arms, Dehqani further expressed regret about the “slow progress” of issue of nuclear disarmament at the United Nations, reiterating the Islamic Republic’s insistence on eliminating all atomic arms based on the nation’s core opposition to all weapons of mass destruction. The Israeli regime is widely believed to be the only possessor of nuclear weapons in the Middle East. The regime reportedly maintains between 200 and 400 atomic warheads, but under its policy of so-called nuclear ambiguity, it has never denied nor confirmed its possession of the weapons of mass destruction. Furthermore, the Israeli regime has never allowed any international inspection of its nuclear facilities and has refused to sign the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). It has also refused to join the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which limits members to civilian uses of the nuclear technology. The UNDC meets annually in geographical working groups for three weeks in the spring, but over the years it has failed to agree on any substantial outcome. The commission, like most other UN bodies, is heavily influenced and manipulated by the US and its allies to ensure their global interests are served through the world body. MFB/HJL