Iran announced in a statement by its Ministry of Foreign Affairs that the United Nations ban on imports and exports of conventional weapons imposed on it was “automatically” lifted, as of Sunday, according to Security Council Resolution 2231 and the agreement on Tehran’s nuclear program.
According to the statement, published by Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Twitter, “As of today, all restrictions on the transfer of weapons, activities related to this and financial services to and from the Islamic Republic of Iran, and all prohibitions related to entry or transit through the territories of the member states of the United Nations imposed.
“A number of Iranian citizens and military officials, it was automatically terminated”.
The date of October 18, 2020 (five years since Resolution 2231) was set for lifting the embargo under the nuclear agreement concluded by Iran in 2015 with the major powers (the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany), which established its legal framework Security Council Resolution 2231.
The United States, which unilaterally withdrew from the agreement in 2018 and re-imposed strict economic sanctions on the Islamic Republic, sought to extend this ban, but this was opposed by the vast majority of Security Council members.
The Iranian Foreign Ministry said in its statement that “Today is a very important day for the international community which, in defiance of the efforts of the American regime, protected Security Council Resolution 2231 and the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action,” which is the official designation of the nuclear agreement concluded in Vienna.
The Iranian Foreign Ministry urged Washington to “abandon its destructive approach to Resolution 2231, return to the full implementation of its obligations under the United Nations Charter, stop violating international law and ignore the international order, and stop destabilizing the West Asian region”.
Tehran warned against taking any step against the lifting of the embargo, considering that this would be a “material breach of the resolution and the goals of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action”.
Should this happen, the Islamic Republic of Iran reserves the right to take any necessary countermeasures to safeguard its national interests”.
The statement stressed that according to the agreement, lifting the arms embargo “decisively and unconditionally, does not require any new resolution, nor any other statement or step from the Security Council”.
The lifting of the embargo imposed by the Security Council, which began in 2007, allows Iran to buy and sell conventional weapons, including tanks, armored vehicles, combat aircraft, attack helicopters and heavy artillery.
The Foreign Ministry statement affirmed that the Islamic Republic is now able to purchase “any necessary weapons or equipment from any source without any legal restrictions, and based exclusively on its defense needs, and it can also export any defense weapons based on its own policies”.
The ministry stressed the country’s “defensive doctrine”, which “was and will remain the main driver behind all steps of the Islamic Republic in maintaining its defensive strength,” stressing that “there is no place in Iran’s defense doctrine of non-conventional weapons, weapons of mass destruction, and the boom in the purchase of conventional weapons”.