Belgium's United Nations Ambassador, who chairs the three-month-old Committee overseeing the imposition of sanctions on Iran, told the Security Council today that, so far, 58 Member States and the European Union had submitted reports on their efforts to implement resolution 1737 (2006).
Of those, 51 States had reported that they already had legislation in place that covered the relevant paragraphs of the resolution and a further 7 States had reported on the steps that they had taken or were set to take to put the necessary frameworks into place, said Johan C. Verbeke (Belgium) in his first briefing to the Council. The Committee was established last December by resolution 1737 (2006), which placed economic sanctions on Iran and prohibited Member States from supplying Tehran with an materials or technology that might contribute to nuclear-weapon development. The resolution also called on States to freeze the assets of particular individuals and companies with ties to Iran's nuclear programmes.
That resolution also entrusted the Committee with, among other things, getting information from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on the action that Agency had taken to effectively implement the relevant measures concerning the technical cooperation given to Iran. Ambassador Verbeke reported today that, on 8 March, IAEA had transmitted its report on the subject, which noted, among other things that, out of 55 projects, 22 would be suspended.
He said that technical cooperation would continue for food, agricultural medical, safety and humanitarian purposes. The Agency's projects in those fields ranged from the improvement of nuclear waste management to the use of radioactive sources in medical treatments, the safety evaluation and upgrading of the Tehran research reactor and as assistance to the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran in strengthening its capabilities for the start-up and operation of the Bushehr nuclear power plant.
Among the projects for which IAEA cooperation was suspended, he noted the strengthening of capabilities for Iran's national energy programme, the establishment of a new nuclear technology centre and the improvement of capabilities in the field of strategic and various technical training programmes. As for the other requirements under the resolution, he said that, during the reporting period, the Committee had not received any requests for designating additional persons and entities that might be subject to an assets freeze, nor had the Committee received any requests to include any additional items in the list of prescribed items that could contribute to enrichment-related activities or the development of a nuclear-weapon delivery system.
He went on to note that the Committee had not received any notifications of requests for exemptions, or requests for delisting of individuals or entities designated in the annex to resolution 1737. Similarly, no requests had been received under paragraph 9 of the resolution, which related to the provision of items or assistance that would clearly not, as determined by the Committee, contribute to the development of Iran's technologies in support of its proliferation-sensitive nuclear activities and the development of nuclear-weapon delivery systems.
He said that, since the Committee's first meeting on 23 January, the members had met nearly every week, holding six informal sessions. He was pleased to report that, as a result of intensive efforts made by its members, and in a spirit of cooperation and good faith, the Committee had made good progress in preparing the guidelines for conducting its work and he hoped that those guidelines would be adopted in the future. He added that, while the Security Council conducted its review of Iran's actions in light of the report received by IAEA, and while the Council deliberated its next steps regarding implementation of the resolution, the Committee would continue to conduct its work effectively.
After Ambassador Verbeke's report, the representative of the United States said Iran's compliance with all the resolutions of the Council and the IAEA Board of Governors was essential, and she urged all Member States to stress the importance of that step in their regular discussions and consultations with Iran.
Noting that many States had taken their obligations under resolution 1737 seriously, she said some reports where much less detailed in their treatment of the steps taken to enforce or enact laws or regulation to implement it. It was essential for Member States to provide comprehensive descriptions of their actions to meet the obligations of the resolution. She was also concerned that approximately 70 per cent of States had yet to submit their report and urged those States that had not done so yet to fulfil that requirement without delay.
The briefing began at 10:25 a.m. and ended at 10:40 a.m.