19 December 2022
Thank you, Madam President, for the opportunity to brief the Council on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and resolution 2231 (2015).
The agreement on the Plan and its endorsement by the Council demonstrated a unity of purpose among its participants. Both the Plan and the resolution support our common objectives of nuclear non-proliferation and regional security, in a manner that delivers tangible economic benefits for the Iranian people.
Back in June, I expressed to this Council the hope that diplomacy would prevail. Unfortunately, despite the tireless efforts of participants to the Plan and the United States since April 2021 to resolve remaining differences, the United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran have yet to return to full and effective implementation of the Plan.
Six months later, the space for diplomacy appears to be rapidly shrinking.
Regrettably, since the Council last met on this issue, the International Atomic Energy Agency has reported on the intention of Iran to install new centrifuges at the Natanz Fuel Enrichment Plant and to produce more uranium enriched up to 60% at the Fordow Fuel Enrichment Plant.
While the Agency has not been able to verify the stockpile of enriched uranium in the country, it estimates that Iran has now a total enriched uranium stockpile of more than eighteen times the allowable amount under the JCPOA. This includes worrying quantities of uranium enriched to 20% and 60%.
The Agency re-iterated that Iran’s decision to cease implementation of its JCPOA nuclear-related commitments has seriously affected its safeguards activities.
Further, the Agency reported that the decision of Iran to “remove all of the Agency’s equipment…for surveillance and monitoring activities in relation to the JCPOA has also had detrimental implications for the Agency’s ability to provide assurance of the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme.”
Against this backdrop, we once again call on Iran to reverse the steps it has taken since July 2019 that are not consistent with its nuclear-related commitments under the Plan.
We also call on the United States to lift or waive its sanctions as outlined in the Plan, and to extend the waivers regarding the trade in oil with Iran.
It is also important for Iran to address concerns raised by participants in the Plan and by other Member States in relation to annex B of resolution 2231 (2015).
I will now turn to the restrictive measures set out in annex B, as outlined in the Secretary-General’s fourteenth report on resolution 2231 (S/2022/912).
First, on the nuclear-related provisions, no new proposals were submitted to the procurement channel in the last six months.
The Council, however, received eight notifications, submitted pursuant to paragraph 2 of annex B, for certain nuclear-related activities consistent with the Plan.
Second, regarding the ballistic missile-related provisions, France, Germany, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Israel, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United States provided information to the Secretary-General and the Council concerning two flight tests of space launch vehicles conducted by Iran in June and November of this year.
We also received information about a new ballistic missile unveiled by Iran in September of this year.
The information received reflects divergent views among those Member States as to whether those launches and other activities are inconsistent with the resolution.
Third, we examined information related to paragraph 4 of annex B.
This paragraph pertains to the supply, sale or transfer to or from Iran of all items, materials, equipment, goods and technology as set out in Council document S/2015/546. This document includes ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and other Unmanned Aerial Vehicle systems with a range of 300 km or more.
In the reporting period, we conducted a visit to the United Kingdom, upon invitation of its authorities.
We examined cruise missile parts seized by the British Royal Navy in early 2022, in international waters south of Iran, and which were alleged to have been transferred in a manner inconsistent with resolution 2231.
We observed many similarities between these parts and other parts examined previously and that we assessed to be of Iranian origin. The latter include those parts seen in the debris of cruise missiles used by the Houthis against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates between 2019 and 2022, and those seized by the United States in 2019.
We also observed manufacture date markings of August 2020 and June and November 2021 on three of the five jet engines examined.
Finally, we identified the manufacturers of several subcomponents, one of whom informed us that two pressure sensors were exported in early 2020. We continue to trace their complete supply chain.
In this reporting period, we also received letters from Ukraine, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States concerning alleged transfers of unmanned aerial vehicles, UAVs, from Iran to the Russian Federation, in a manner inconsistent with paragraph 4 of annex B.
In their letters, the five countries also asked that an inspection be conducted.
The Permanent Representative of Iran denied that his country had supplied UAVs for use in the conflict in Ukraine; the Russian Federation also expressed its serious concerns regarding the requests of these Member States.
The Secretariat is examining the available information and any findings will be reported to the Council, as appropriate, in due course.
Finally, on the assets freeze provisions, we received information from Ukraine, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States alleging that some of the UAVs transferred by Iran to the Russian Federation were manufactured by an entity on the 2231 list and therefore transferred in a manner inconsistent with the relevant provisions of annex B.
The Secretariat is also examining the available information and will report back to the Council, as appropriate, in due course.
The Secretary-General remains convinced that lasting peace and security for all Member States depend on dialogue and cooperation. Restoring the JCPOA remains crucial: to assure the international community of the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme and to allow Iran to reach its full economic potential.
We encourage all Parties and the United States to resume their efforts to resolve the outstanding issues lest the gains achieved by the Plan after years of painstaking efforts be completely lost.
In closing, I would like to thank His Excellency Mr. Fergal Mythen and his predecessor for their leadership throughout their tenure as Facilitator for resolution 2231, as well as the Coordinator of the Procurement Working Group of the Joint Commission for our continued cooperation.
Thank you, Madam President.