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14 Apr, 2024 22:55

Western demands for UN to discuss Iran attack are ‘hypocrisy’ – Moscow

Failure to condemn the Israeli bombing of Tehran’s consulate in Syria spurred the latest violence, Russia’s ambassador has argued
Western demands for UN to discuss Iran attack are ‘hypocrisy’ – Moscow

The UN Security Council helped give rise to Saturday’s Iranian attack against Israel by hypocritically failing to take action over the illegal bombing that provoked the latest violence in the region, Russia’s ambassador to the global body has claimed.

“What happened on the night of April 14 did not happen in a vacuum,” Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia told members of the UN Security Council on Sunday. “The steps undertaken by Iran became a reaction to the disgraceful inaction by this council.”

At issue was the April 1 missile strike that killed seven Iranian military officers, including two senior commanders, at Tehran’s consulate in Damascus. Western members of the Security Council stood in the way of rebuking Israel over the “egregious attack,” despite the fact that it was a violation of international law on the inviolability of diplomatic installations, the Russian envoy said.

“We called on UN Security Council colleagues to clearly and unequivocally condemn such reckless steps to make sure that they don’t get repeated,” Nebenzia noted. “We also warned that otherwise, the risk of a repeat of such acts and a general escalation in the region would grow manifold.” He added, “The outcome is now clear for everyone to see.”

Iran launched hundreds of suicide drones and missiles against Israel on Saturday night. West Jerusalem claimed success in intercepting 99% of the barrages and preventing major casualties or infrastructure damage.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry responded by calling for “painful sanctions” against Iran, as well as the designation of Tehran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organization. An emergency UN Security Council session was convened to discuss the attack.

Nebenzia contrasted the council’s concern over protecting Western nations and their allies with its inaction when Israel bombed Iran’s consulate. “We know very well that an attack against a diplomatic representation is a casus belli under international law. And if a Western representation had been hit, you would immediately have rained down reprisals.”

However, he added, “when it comes to other countries, their rights – including the right to self-defense – well, that’s a different matter, as you like to say… What we’re witnessing is a display of hypocrisy and double standards that is almost embarrassing to watch.”

The US, UK, and France essentially declined to confirm that the basic principles of international law concerning diplomatic facilities apply equally to all states, Nebenzia said. At the same time, Israel has faced no consequences for disregarding UN resolutions, including last month’s demand for a ceasefire in Gaza.

“We think it’s urgent for the entire international community to undertake all efforts necessary to deescalate the situation,” the ambassador said. “Otherwise, the region could be drawn into a vicious cycle of mutual attacks and violence.”

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