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Russia Will Not Recognize US Notice to UNSC as Sanctions Snapback Against Iran, Envoy to UN Says

© AP Photo / Richard Drew / Russian Ambassador to the United Nations Vassily Nebenzia
Russian Ambassador to the United Nations Vassily Nebenzia - Sputnik International
UNITED NATIONS (Sputnik) - Russia will not recognize US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s notice to the UN Security Council on Iran as the beginning of the procedure to re-impose sanctions against the Islamic Republic, Russia’s Ambassador to the United Nations Vassily Nebenzia told reporters on Thursday.
"A [sanctions] snapback can be triggered by a country that is a participant of the JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action], of which the United States is not. They officially withdrew from the JCPOA. That’s a question that inevitably every other delegation at the Security Council agree on", Nebenzia said. "We consider a snapback nonexistent, we will not take it as a snapback - what they will presumably notify today the presidency of the Security Council".

Meanwhile, a diplomatic source at the United Nations said on Thursday that Russia had requested a UN Security Council meeting to be held on Friday, following the US move to invoke the reimposition of all UN sanctions on Iran.

“Yes, the meeting has been requested for Friday”, the source said.

Pompeo is expected to notify the UN Security Council later on Thursday that the United States intends to initiate a snapback of all United Nations sanctions against Iran.

Pompeo is currently visiting the UN headquarters in New York, where he is set to meet with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Security Council President for the month of August Dian Triansyah Djani.

The United States announced plans to trigger the snapback mechanism to re-impose all UN sanctions against Iran - previously lifted under the JCPOA - after failing to get the UN Security Council to pass a resolution to indefinitely extend the arms embargo on Iran. The UN arms embargo is set to expire in October under the terms of the nuclear agreement.

The snapback procedure is outlined in resolution 2231, which endorsed the nuclear agreement, and stipulates that if one of the signatories finds another to have taken actions which constitute significant non-performance of commitments under the accord, the UN Security Council would have a vote on whether to continue with the suspension of the sanctions against Iran.

The get the sanctions reinstated, a signatory needs to veto the UN resolution. The United States unilaterally withdrew from the JCPOA on 8 May 2018.

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