In a Friday meeting at the UN Security Council, the US was heavily criticized by Council members for attempting to use the platform and the anti-government protests in Iran for promoting US interests and undermining the Iranian nuclear deal.

Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley Photo Credit: EPA

US President Donald Trump’s administration was under fire during a meeting of the UN Security Council on Friday. The emergency conference was called by the US to discuss the recent wave of anti-government protests in Iran.

During the meeting US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said that her country stands behind the Iranian people who are battling against an oppressive regime. “The Iranian regime’s contempt for the rights of its people has been widely documented for many years,” said Haley. “Let there be no doubt whatsoever, the US stands unapologetically with those in Iran who seek freedom for themselves prosperity for their families, and dignity for their nation. We will not be quiet. No dishonest attempt to call the protesters ‘puppets of foreign powers’ will change that.”

Although the UNSC members condemned the Iranian government for its response to the reportedly increasing volatile protests during which 21 people were killed, they also warned against using the Iranian people’s dissent as an instrument to undermine the nuclear deal with Iran.“We must be wary of any attempt to exploit this crisis for personal ends,” said French Ambassador to the UN François Delattre, adding that doing so “would have a diametrically opposed outcome to that which is wished.”  

Russia’s Ambassador to the UN Vassily Nebenzia accused the US of using the platform to continue and undermine the Iranian nuclear deal under the pretext of protecting human rights and the Iranian people. Iranian Ambassador to the UN Gholamali Khoshroo said his country has evidence that the protests were “very clearly” directed by foreign powers and criticized the US for abusing its power as a member of the Council.

Iranian foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif also responded to the conference in a post on his Twitter account on Friday. “The UNSC rebuffed the US’ naked attempt to hijack its mandate. Majority emphasized the need to fully implement the JCPOA and to refrain from interfering in internal affairs of others,” he said, referring to the nuclear deal by its official acronym. “Another FP [foreign policy] blunder for the Trump administration.”