The UN Security Council on Friday resoundingly defeated a US resolution to indefinitely extend the UN arms embargo on Iran, with the Trump administration getting support from only the Dominican Republic but vowing further action to prevent Tehran's sale and export of conventional weapons.

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The vote in the 15-member council was two in favor, two against and 11 abstentions, leaving it far short of the minimum nine “yes” votes required for adoption. Russia and China strongly opposed the resolution, but didnt need to use their vetoes.

The Trump administration has said repeatedly it will not allow the arms embargo provision in the Security Council resolution endorsing the 2015 nuclear agreement between Iran and six major powers to expire as scheduled October 18.

Iran hailed the UN vote on Saturday, with foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi tweeting: "In the 75 years of United Nations history, America has never been so isolated."

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the defeat of the resolution ahead of a very brief virtual council meeting to reveal the vote.

He said Israel and the six Arab Gulf nations who supported the extension “know Iran will spread even greater chaos and destruction if the embargo expires, but the Security Council chose to ignore them”.

“The United States will never abandon our friends in the region who expected more from the Security Council,” Pompeo said in a statement. “We will continue to work to ensure that the theocratic terror regime does not have the freedom to purchase and sell weapons that threaten the heart of Europe, the Middle East and beyond.”

US Ambassador Kelly Craft said, “The United States stands sickened – but not surprised – as the clear majority of council members gave the green light to Iran to buy and sell all manner of conventional weapons.”

“The councils failure today will serve neither peace nor security,” she warned. “Rather, it will fuel greater conflict and drive even more insecurity.”

Pompeo suggested the US would invoke the “snap back” mechanism in the 2015 nuclear deal that would restore all UN sanctions on Iran – and Craft said the United States will go ahead “in the coming days” and keep America's “promise to stop at nothing to extend the arms embargo”.

“Snap back” was envisioned in the event Iran was proven to be in violation of the accord, under which it received billions of dollars in sanctions relief in exchange for curbs on its nuclear programme.

President Donald Trump pulled out of the nuclear agreement between Iran and six major powers, known as the JCPOA, in 2018. But the US circulated a six-page memo Thursday from State Department lawyers outlining why the United States remains part of the 2015 Security Council resolution that endorsed the deal and still has the right to use the "snap back" provision.

'Bullying will fail,' says China

The five other powers – Russia, China, United Kingdom, France and Germany – remain committed to the deal, and diplomats from several of these countries have voiced concern that extending the arms embargo would lead Iran to exit the nuclear agreement and speed up its pursuit of nuclear weapons.

Chinas UN ambassador, Zhang Jun, reiterated after the vote the Chinese contention that since the US is no longer party to the 2015 agreement, it is “ineligible to demand the Security Council invoke a snap back”. He said the overwhelming majority of council members “believe the US attempt has no legal basis”.

“Should the US insist regardless of international opinion, it is doomed to fail like today,” Zhang said in a statement, adding that the vote showed “that unilateralism receives no support and bullying will fail”.

While voting on the US draft resolution was under way, Russia said President Vladimir Putin called for a meeting of leaders of the five permanent members of the Security Council along with Germany and Iran to avoid escalation over US attempts to extend the Iranian arms embargo.

In a statement released by the Kremlin, Putin said “the question is urgent“, adding that the goal of the video conference would be “to outline steps to avoid confrontation and exacerbation of the situation in the UN Security Council”.

”If the leaders are fundamentally ready for a conversation, we propose to promptly coordinate the agenda,” Putin said. “The alternative is to further build up tension, to increase the risk of conflict. This development must be avoided.”

French President Emmanuel Macrons office confirmed Frances “availability in prRead More – Source

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