US Ambassador Nikki Haley said today that it was “time for the Security Council to act” following the release of a report by UN experts concluding that Iran had violated the arms embargo on Yemen.
The report found that Tehran had failed to block supplies to Yemen’s Huthi rebels of ballistic missiles that were fired at Saudi Arabia. “This report highlights what we’ve been saying for months: Iran has been illegally transferring weapons in violation of multiple Security Council resolutions,” Haley said in a statement.
The ambassador added that “the world cannot continue to allow these blatant violations to go unanswered” and that Tehran must face “consequences.” “It’s time for the Security Council to act.”
Iran has strongly denied arming the Huthis and has accused Haley of presenting “fabricated” evidence that a November 4 missile fired at Riyadh airport was Iranian-made.
Diplomats said the Iranian violations are likely to be addressed in a draft resolution renewing sanctions on Yemen that the council is set to adopt later this month.
It remains unclear however if Russia will back any move that punishes Iran.
Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia last month cast doubt over the report’s findings, which AFP first reported on in January when the document was confidentially sent to the Security Council.
While the report found that Iran had violated the 2015 embargo, the panel of UN experts said they were not able to identify the supplier.
Russia has the power to block sanctions by using its veto power it enjoys as one of the five permanent Security Council members, along with Britain, China, France and the United States.