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Why Iran abstained from voting on Myanmar resolution?

26 December 2017 15:50

 

The office of the Permanent representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to New York explained the reason for Iran’s abstention from voting on the resolution against Myanmar.

The office of the Permanent representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to New York issued a statement concerning Iran’s abstention from voting on the resolution against Myanmar.

The full text of the statement is as follows:

For the last three decades, Iran has been one of the victims of the highly politicized nature of the Third Committee of UN General Assembly. The number of countries with a human rights resolution passed against them in the Third Committee is very few, but Iran has always been present on their ominous roster. That roster simply follows the policies of its executors (for instance, Saudi Arabi has tabled the anti-Syrian resolution while Canada has proposed the resolution against Iran).

Iran’s basic policy with respect to the examination of countries’ conditions by the Third Committee has been to counter it. Iran has deemed the Third Committee highly politicized and unsuitable for the examination of countries’ conditions through years and has openly clarified its position in all its speeches. This fundamental policy is still pursued taking into account western governments’ antagonistic measures against Iran and their abuse of the Third Committee to follow their own ends.

Many countries who hold a similar stance toward human rights as Iran voted against the Myanmar resolution and other countries such as Cuba abstained from voting.

When the resolution was being approved, Iran released a statement condemning the measures taken by Myanmar government and expressed its gratitude to the government of Bangladesh. Taking into account the unreliability of the Third Committee for its measures against countries, Iran decided not to participate in approving the resolution against Myanmar.

This lack of participation indicates Iran’s stance toward the Third Committee of UN General Assembly and is not limited to any specific resolution. Iran has already approved the said resolution through the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

Bangladesh abstained from voting for the resolution against Iran adopted by Canada in the Third Committee. Iran’s stance toward the resolutions against countries in the Third Committee was explained at various levels for the representative of Bangladesh and its ambassador to Tehran. Nevertheless, that country did not change its stance with respect to the anti-Iranian resolution.

Iran could have voted for the resolution against Myanmar adopted by the Saudi Arabia. In that case, however, not even friendly nations would have any longer believed that Iran has adopted a just position against the Third Committee resolution.

Iran had two choices with respect to this resolution. Similar to several friendly countries, it could have voted for the resolution, a measure which would have been against the Muslims of Myanmar. Or it could have voted against the resolution, which would have been against the ethical position adopted by Iran. Therefore, Iran chose to abstain from voting altogether plus giving a speech that condemned the measures taken by Myanmar government.

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