WASHINGTON, June 7 (Reuters) – Iran demanded action from the U.N. Security Council about an Israeli threat to attack its nuclear sites if it continues uranium enrichment, according to a letter released on Saturday by Iranian U.N. Ambassador Mohammad Khazaee.
Israeli Transport Minister Shaul Mofaz was quoted on Friday in an Israeli newspaper saying that an attack on Iran looks “unavoidable” given the apparent failure of sanctions to deny Tehran technology with bomb-making potential.
“Such a dangerous threat against a sovereign state and a member of the United Nations constitutes a manifest violation of international law and contravenes the most fundamental principles of the Charter of the United Nations, and, thus, requires a resolute and clear response on the part of the United Nations, particularly the Security Council,” Khazaee’s letter to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, dated June 6, said.
Iran has defied Western pressure to abandon its uranium enrichment projects, which it says are for peaceful electricity generation.
Tehran has also threatened to retaliate against Israel, believed to have the Middle East’s only atomic arsenal, and U.S. targets in the Gulf, if there is any attack on Iran.
Mofaz’s threat against Iran was the most explicit from a member of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s government, which has preferred to hint at a possible use of force.
Khazaee’s letter said the Security Council’s history of failing to act against Israel “has emboldened it to continue and even increase its unlawful behaviors and policies.”
Israel is widely assumed to have a nuclear arsenal but has never confirmed it publicly. Khazaee said that “poses the most immediate and serious threat that the world and the region are facing.”
(Writing by Patricia Zengerle; editing by Stacey Joyce)
Sat Jun 7, 2008 6:40pm BST