Security Council Briefed by Chairman of 1737 Committee on Implementation of Sanctions Against Iran

UN Department of Public Information-News Media Division
December 10, 2008

Weapon Program: 

  • Nuclear

The Security Council today heard the eighth quarterly briefing by the Chairman of the Committee established under Security Council resolution 1737 (2006) to monitor implementation of the sanctions imposed against Iran.

Committee Chairman Jan Grauls of Belgium told an open meeting that the figures concerning States that had presented reports under that text and related decisions were 90 reports under resolution 1737 (2006), 77 reports under resolution 1747 (2007) and 63 reports under resolution 1803 (2008).

Resolution 1737 (2006) banned trade with Iran in all items, materials, equipment, goods and technology that could contribute to the country's enrichment-related, reprocessing or heavy-water-related activities, or to the development of nuclear-weapon delivery systems. In March 2007, the Council adopted resolution 1747, further tightening those sanctions by imposing a ban on arms sales and expanding the freeze on assets.

A continued tightening of the sanctions regime occurred when the Council adopted resolution 1803 (2008), which, among other things, called upon all States to "exercise vigilance in the areas of publicly provided financial support for trade with Iran and of banking with Iran, particularly with respect to Bank Melli and Bank Saderat". Other measures included the inspection of cargo suspected of carrying prohibited goods, and the extension of travel bans and asset freezes.

Mr. Grauls reported that, on 15 October, the United States had provided a briefing on its efforts to implement provisions of resolutions 1737 (2006) and 1803 (2008) relating to the transfer of goods and technology to Iran that could contribute to enrichment-related, reprocessing or heavy-water-related activities, or to the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems. Following that briefing, some Committee members had also shared the steps they had taken to implement the relevant provisions. On the same date, Norway had provided a briefing on its plans to strengthen the effectiveness of the regulatory oversight of the safety at the Bushehr nuclear power plant.

He said that, on 7 and 21 November, the Russian Federation had notified the Committee of supplies it had delivered for the light water reactor at Bushehr. In his previous briefing (see Press Release SC/9443), Mr. Grauls said, he had noted that the Committee members were considering a written request for certain specific information from a Member State, adding that the Committee subsequently had responded to the communication from that Member State.

Following the briefing, representatives of the United States, France, Italy and the United Kingdom noted that, according to recent reports of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Iran continued to defy the demands of the Council and had not cooperated fully with the IAEA. They expressed support for the "dual-track" approach.

The representative of France described additional European Union measures meant to ensure the implementation of Council decisions, in terms of embargoed goods and financial flows and cargo inspections. The United States representative noted the "chilling" fact that, according to the latest IAEA report (document GOV/2008/59 of 19 November), Iran now had 630 kilograms of low-enriched uranium, which was half the amount needed for the production of a nuclear bomb.

The representative of the Russian Federation, expressing the hope that the Committee would continue to be guided by the spirit and letter of resolutions 1737 (2006), 1747 (2007) and 1803 (2008), said resolution 1835, adopted in September, clearly demonstrated the unity of the six countries -- China, France, Germany, Russian Federation, United Kingdom and United States -- regarding compliance with IAEA requirements.

China's representative, stressing that a peaceful solution of the issue through diplomatic activities was the best option, said that the six countries, through the European Union, were maintaining a constructive dialogue with Iran with the aim of a resumption of negotiations. The IAEA and Iran were also cooperating on pending questions regarding Iran's nuclear programme. The international community should step up diplomatic efforts and promote dialogue with Iran for early resumption of negotiations, and Iran should resolve issues outstanding with the IAEA.

The representative of Libya pointed out that non-proliferation efforts should be comprehensive and non-selective and that all countries should be subject to IAEA's review and safeguard. That included Israel, which had not yet joined the IAEA system and made it impossible to establish a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East.

The representative of Costa Rica thanked Mr. Grauls, who was going to leave the Council and the Committee as of 1 January 2009, for the excellent work done on such a "delicate" issue.

The meeting started at 12:45 p.m. and adjourned 1:15 p.m.