Cuba sides with Iran at UN meeting over ambassador dispute

Iran’s appointee for the position of ambassador to the United Nations Hamid Aboutalebi

TEHRAN (FNA)- Cuba piped up to side with Iran at the UN Committee on Relations with the Host Country meeting where Iran formally protested – and the United States defended – the decision by the Obama administration to bar Iran’s new UN Ambassador pick from US soil.

On Friday, President Obama signed legislation that effectively bars Hamid Aboutalebi from getting a US visa because of his role during the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis.

Iran appealed its case to the UN committee on Tuesday. Diplomats told that the Cuban ambassador spoke in defense of Iran, and used the meeting of the 19-member panel to criticize the United States for its handling of the situation, the Iran Focus reported.

The panel to which Iran was appealing also includes China and Russia.

Diplomats, though, told that the process of reviewing Iran’s case could take weeks, if not months.

This morning, Iran’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Gholam Hossein Dehqani lashed out at Washington for its denial to issue visa for Hamid Aboutalebi, and called on the UN chief to take serious action against the US move which has violated the UN headquarters agreement.

“This move is in contravention of the host country’s commitments regarding the headquarters agreement with the UN and other diplomatic laws,” Dehqani said in an emergency meeting of the UN Host Committee on Wednesday morning.

He underlined that the US move will negatively influence the activities of the member-states and it will undermine the UNˈs status.

Dehqani noted that Iran will certainly pursue the row in the Host Committee of the UN.

Under the 1947 Headquarters Agreement, the United States, as the host country of the UN, is required to allow access to the world body for foreign diplomats.

Contrary to the UN regulations, the White House on April 11 passed a measure by a voice vote that would bar Hamid Aboutalebi from entering the United States for his alleged involvement in the takeover of the US embassy in Tehran during post-revolution incidents in 1979. Later, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Washington has informed Tehran that its new ambassador to the UN will not be welcomed to the US.

The US hostile move which has come against the backdrop of improved relations between Iran and the US, specially since a breakthrough deal which has soothed the Iran-West nuclear standoff, has received tough reactions in Tehran.

In a letter to the UN Committee on Relations with the Host Country, Iran’s Permanent Mission to the UN asked for a special meeting of the body to consider Washington’s refusal to issue visa for Iran’s appointee Hamid Aboutalebi.

Last week, Dehqani asked UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to publish his letter to the UN committee.

By Fars News Agency


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