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Letter from Iran on the resolution No. 7988 adopted by the League of Arab States referring to the incident involving the Saudi embassy in Tehran

United Nations
Security Council


Distr.: General
19 February 2016
Original: English

Letter dated 18 February 2016 from the Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General

Upon instructions from my Government and with reference to the letter dated 5 February 2016 from the Chargé d'affaires a.i. of the Permanent Mission of the Arab Republic of Egypt to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Security Council (S/2016/120), transmitting resolution No. 7988 of 10 January 2016 adopted at an extraordinary session of the Council of the League of Arab States, I wish to bring the following to your attention:

1. This resolution refers to the incident involving the embassy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in Tehran. In my letter dated 4 January 2016, I expressed our regret over and explained the developments leading to this unfortunate incident as well as the wide array of efforts by the Iranian Government to protect the embassy, and the investigation launched to identify and punish the perpetrators. I informed you of the fact that the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran personally intervened and instructed the relevant government agencies to pursue the issue and bring the elements behind the incident to justice. I also reiterated Iran's commitments to international law and relevant international instruments, especially the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 1961 and the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations of 1963, and Iran's determination to take necessary measures to prevent the occurrence of a similar incident in the future.

2. The said resolution goes far beyond its title and scope, namely, inviolability of diplomatic premises, and contains many baseless and unfounded allegations and politically motivated fabrications against my Government that are totally irrelevant to the issue at hand. I strongly reject all these allegations, and find them unacceptable especially at the present time, as they divert attention away from the main threats against the Islamic and Arab world, i.e., terrorism and violent extremism. They are nothing but attempts by a few of the signatories to cover up their support for the sectarian and extremist ideologies and the groups that are posing serious threats to our region and beyond.

3. Regional gatherings should aim to promote common understanding and help to advance peace and cooperation in line with the principles and purposes of the Charter of the United Nations. This resolution is nothing but repeating predetermined biased positions and false allegations by a few against Iran, whose self-restraint has prevented this concerted campaign from achieving its goal of exacerbating tension and derailing peace in the Persian Gulf region. We also consider the circulation of such misleading documents as a misuse of the United Nations procedure for disseminating information.

4. Iran's foreign policy accords priority to friendship with neighbours, peace and stability in the region and constructive engagement across the globe. We are determined to actively pursue this policy in the face of increasing threats of terrorism and violent extremism and to cooperate with our neighbours and the international community in dealing with these common global threats.

5. Iran highly respects the principles of national sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries while it believes that the legitimate rights of people should be well respected.

6. On the unilateral claim by the United Arab Emirates over the Iranian islands of Abu Musa, the Lesser Tunb and the Greater Tunb, the Islamic Republic of Iran reiterates its consistent and principled position that it does not recognize the existence of any such dispute between Iran and the United Arab Emirates; the three islands have been an inseparable part of Iranian territory and, therefore, any claim to the contrary is categorically rejected. Nonetheless, and to show its utmost respect for the principle of good-neighbourliness, Iran has always expressed its readiness to talk with the United Arab Emirates bilaterally with a view to removing any misunderstanding that may exist on the part of the United Arab Emirates over Abu Musa island. That said, we caution against any involvement by third parties in this issue of a bilateral character and regard such involvement to be hardly constructive or useful.

7. Finally, "Persian Gulf is the only true geographical designation for the body of water lying between Iran and the Arabian Peninsula, which has been used from the dawn of history. As the institutional memory of all renowned cartographic agencies testifies, this sea area has been always identified as "Persian Gulf. In this context, the policy of the United Nations in the standardization of geographical names, and its practice in emphasizing the name Persian Gulf as the only geographical designation applicable to this body of water, are noteworthy and should therefore be respected by all.

I should be grateful if you would have the present letter circulated to all members of the Security Council and issued as a document of the Security Council.

(Signed) Gholamali Khoshroo
Permanent Representative

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