A top Iranian official on Wednesday slammed world powers for failing to meet their own promises to eliminate their nuclear arsenals and contribute to global non-proliferation.
Gholam Hossein Dehghani, Iran’s deputy ambassador to the United Nations, made the statements in an address to the UN’s Disarmament Commission.
Dehgani criticized nuclear weapons states for falling far short on commitments they made in the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), first implemented more than four decades ago.
Dehgani’s statements specifically targeted China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States—the five nuclear weapons states that have signed the NPT. Israel, India, Pakistan and also known atomic weapons states, and according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, North Korea possesses nuclear weapons as well.
There is no known evidence that Iran has a nuclear weapons program or intends to create one.
“The NPT, which was the foundation of the nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation regime, had succeeded in constraining the spread of nuclear weapons because non-nuclear-weapon States had kept their end of the bargain,” said Dehgani, according to the UN’s summary of his statements.
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“The prospect for establishing a zone free of those weapons in the Middle East would be enhanced when certain nuclear-weapon States abandoned their unconstructive policy of exempting Israel from the NPT,” Dehgani continued.
A report from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute released last year found that “all the nuclear-armed states are modernizing their remaining nuclear forces and appear determined to retain sizeable nuclear arsenals for the foreseeable future.”
The administration of President Barack Obama is currently proposing a $348 billion dollar plan to “rebuild the entire U.S. nuclear arsenal, including the warheads, and the missiles, planes and submarines that carry them,” wrote Stephen Young, senior analyst at Union of Concerned Scientists, in an article published last month.
Dehgani’s statements came days after a framework nuclear agreement was reached between Iran and the five members of the United Nations Security Council (U.S., Russia, China, United Kingdom, and France) plus Germany.
“The deeper problem with the P5+1 agreement with Iran is not the controversy it has generated among the bomb-Iran contingent but the unacknowledged hypocrisy of the P5 nations — the U.S., Russia, China, Great Britain and France — which, of course, are all nuclear powers themselves,” wrote Chicago-based journalist Robert Koehler in an article published Thursday in Common Dreams.
Koehler continued, “They have made no real effort to pursue global nuclear disarmament by getting rid of their own arsenals, as they agreed to do when they signed the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, which went into effect in 1970.”
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