Hansard Highlights from Sept. 18, 2006
Mon, Sept. 18, 2006. Edited Hansard. Number 47. 39th Parliament, 1st Session (original link: http://www2.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=39&Pub=hansard&Ses=1&DocId=2319085&File=0)
War-mongering on Iran
Hon. Anita Neville (Winnipeg South Centre, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to turn the attention of the House to Iran’s refusal to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency in connection with its nuclear program.
On July 31, the UN Security Council adopted resolution 1696 that:
Demands, in this context, that Iran shall suspend all enrichment-related and reprocessing activities, including research and development, to be verified by the IAEA.
It gave it one month to do so or face the possibility of economic and diplomatic sanctions. Instead of allaying fears that it seeks to develop nuclear weapons, Tehran responded with sabre-rattling and on August 19 launched extensive military exercises to intimidate the international community.
On September 14, IAEA issued a report stating that Iran had not suspended its enrichment related activities. In accordance with Security Council resolution 1696, the time has come to consider serious economic sanctions to show Tehran that the world will not be intimidated by its intransigence.
Iran was attempting to “intimidate” the international community? I think it’s the other way around and it’s a minority of the international community that is attempting to intimidate Iran.
Resolution 1696 (2006) Adopted by Vote of 14 – 1 ( Qatar), Iran Says Peaceful Programme No Threat, Council’s Consideration Unwarranted
The Security Council, seriously concerned that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was still unable to provide assurances about Iran’s undeclared nuclear material and activities after more than three years, today demanded that Iran suspend all enrichment-related and reprocessing activities, including research and development, and gave it one month to do so or face the possibility of economic and diplomatic sanctions to give effect to its decision.
And Iran’s point of view is included in this release, and I think it’s very interesting:
Iran’s representative asserted that its peaceful nuclear programme posed no threat to international peace and security, and, therefore, dealing with the issue in the Security Council was unwarranted and void of any legal basis or practical utility. Far from reflecting the international community’s concerns, the sponsors’ approach flouted the stated position of the overwhelming majority of Member States. Today’s action by the Council, which was the culmination of efforts aimed at making the suspension of uranium enrichment mandatory, violated international law, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and IAEA resolutions. It also ran counter to the views of the majority of United Nations Member States, which the Council was obliged to represent. The sole reason for pushing the Council to take action was that Iran had decided, after over two years of negotiations, to resume the exercise of its inalienable right to nuclear technology for peaceful purposes, by partially reopening its fully safeguarded facilities and ending a voluntary suspension.
Iran’s right to enrich uranium was recognized under the NPT, he said. And, upholding the right of State parties to international regimes was as essential as ensuring respect for their obligations. Those regimes, including the NPT, were sustained by a balance between rights and obligations. Threats would not sustain the NPT or other international regimes, but ensuring that members could draw rightful benefits from membership, and that non-members were not rewarded for their intransigence, did. Yet, today, the world was witnessing a dangerous trend. While members of the NPT were denied their rights and punished, those who defied the NPT, particularly the perpetrators of the current carnage in Lebanon and Palestine, were rewarded by generous nuclear cooperation agreements. “This is one awkward way to safeguard the NPT or ensure its universality”, he said.
Even though they’ve been lied about for decades, I’m sure the Iranian government is not full of goodness and light. But I’m also sure they don’t want to be attacked. And I think many of us don’t want to see thousands or millions of innocent Iranians die in a war that is stirred up by Western governments.
The existing nuclear powers are all hypocrites. They have nuclear weapons – are they obeying the NPT? Are they reducing them? Israel has nuclear weapons and where is the condemnation of Israel? Has Canada not supplied material to produce nuclear weapons?
All this hypocrisy – while the U.S. is constantly threatening Iran. And we just sit helplessly waiting for the war to start – listening to these politicians threaten foreign countries with sanctions and talk about how much Iran wants war when it’s obvious that Western nations are gunning for Iran and other countries that threaten to act independently of Western influence.