Wednesday, 20 Feb 2019 - 15 of Adar I, 5779

EU sticks to nuclear deal with Iran but expresses concern about ballistic missiles, Iran’s rôle in Syria and Lebanon

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”The Council has serious concerns regarding Iran’s military involvement and continuous presence of Iranian forces in Syria.”

”The Council is also gravely concerned by Iran’s ballistic missile activity and calls upon Iran to refrain from these activities, in particular ballistic missile launches that are inconsistent with UN Security Council resolution 2231.”

 

BRUSSELS— While reiterating its commitment to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran that US President Donald Trump pulled out of last May, the European Union expressed concern about Tehran’s hostile rôle in the region, including the military, financial and political support to non-state actors in countries such as Syria and Lebanon, and the ballistic missiles activity. 

In a long statement issued Monday, the EU expressed ‘’serious concerns regarding Iran’s military involvement and continuous presence of Iranian forces in Syria”. ‘’The European Union calls upon Iran to fully support the UN-led process on Syria in line with UN Security Council resolution 2254, and urges Iran to use its leverage with the Syrian regime to this end. It urges Iran as one of the Astana guarantors, together with Russia and Turkey, to ensure cessation of hostilities and unhindered, safe and sustainable humanitarian access throughout all of Syria, and particularly in Idlib,’’ the statement reads.

The EU also said it was ‘’gravely concerned’’ by Iran’s ballistic missile activity and called  upon Iran to refrain from these activities, in particular ballistic missile launches that are inconsistent with UN Security Council resolution 2231.

‘’Iran continues to undertake efforts to increase the range and precision of its missiles, together with increasing the number of tests and operational launches. These activities deepen mistrust and contribute to regional instability,’’ the statement said.

The EU statement came days after Iran unveiled the new Hoveizeh cruise missile with a range of more than 1,300 kilometres.

The EU mentioned also hostile activities conducted by Iran on the territory of several Member States – namely Denmark and France, where Iran-sponsored assassination  plots were uncovered last year.

‘’The European Union will continue to demonstrate unity and solidarity in this area and urges Iran to put an immediate end to such unacceptable behaviour,’’ according to the statement.

.The EU also said it remains ‘’seriously concerned’’ about the human rights situation in Iran, mentioning in particular the  death penalty which is frequently applied.

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