Oh, lovely: Iran to preside over United Nations arms-control forum later this month

posted at 8:41 pm on May 14, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

Every year, the oh-so-august body of international leaders at the United Nations put on a Conference on Disarmament — “established in 1979 as the single multilateral disarmament negotiating forum of the international community” — which has in the past has produced international treaties on nuclear non-proliferation, chemical-weapons prohibitions, and etcetera.

So… why is it, precisely, that Iran is going to be leading this year’s little disarmament shindig? The WFB reports:

Iran will preside over the United Nations arms control forum this month, despite the fact that it is under U.N. sanctions for illicit nuclear activities and routinely supplies arms to the terrorist organization Hezbollah in violation of international law. …

UN Watch, a Geneva-based watchdog group, blasted the decision to allow Iran to chair the conference.

“This is like putting Jack the Ripper in charge of a women’s shelter,” said UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer in a statement. “Iran is an international outlaw state that illegally supplies rockets to Syria, Hezbollah, and Hamas, aiding and abetting mass murder and terrorism. To make this rogue regime head of world arms control is simply an outrage. Abusers of international norms should not be the public face of the U.N.” …

Come on. Iran, you might remember, is currently under United Nations sanctions for their refusal to lay off of their sketchy nuclear program, but U.N. officials are saying that it is merely Iran’s turn in the rotation to take charge of the proceedings. Apparently, this is not supposed to be a big deal, because it’s purely a ceremonial/administrative thing… but I don’t happen to see it that way, and fortunately, neither does the U.S. delegation:

Iran, and any nation facing sanctions for its weapons program, should be “barred” from holding formal UN positions, argued Erin Pelton, spokeswoman for the US mission at the United Nations. …

The conference is struggling to craft a deal on nuclear disarmament, preventing arms from spreading to outer space and halting the development of other weapons of mass destruction.

Iran’s presidency is “unfortunate and highly inappropriate,” said Pelton. “The United States will not be represented at the ambassadorial level during any meeting presided over by Iran.” …

But she added that “allowing Iran — a country that is in flagrant violation of its obligations under multiple UN Security Council resolutions and to the IAEA board of governors — to hold such a position runs counter to the goals and objectives of the Conference on Disarmament itself,” said the spokeswoman.

Iranian officials, of course, are in high dudgeon about the United States’ announced boycott, and are getting rather defensive about it:

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is a founding member of the United Nations,” said Alireza Miryousefi, spokesman for Iran’s U.N. mission. …

“Iran is a State Party to and in full compliance with all major treaties prohibiting the weapons of mass destruction negotiated within this body,” he said. …

“During its presidency, the Islamic Republic of Iran would focus on promoting the goals and objectives of the Conference on Disarmament through according the highest priority to nuclear disarmament and the total elimination of nuclear arsenals of the nuclear-weapon States in an irreversible, transparent and internationally verifiable manner,” Miryousefi said.

Do you suppose he managed to get that out with a straight face?

Good grief. The United Nations never seems to fail to decline on opportunities to prove that it really, truly is an organization for advancing human rights and freedom rather than a weaksauce forum for advancing the prestige and interests of even its most questionable member states. From their grandiose, lecturing, globalist yet completely impotent climate-change conferences to their legitimization of nefarious regimes trying to forcibly cut off access to their people’s freedom of information, why is it that we are devoting more than five billions dollars of taxpayer money this year alone into this extended showcase of mediocrity?


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