May 7, 2024, 2:45 PM

Iran raps US’ arms race in outer space

Iran raps US’ arms race in outer space

TEHRAN, May 07 (MNA) – An Iranian UN representative lashed out at the US government for refusing to prevent an arms race in outer space while reminding the international community of its responsibility for the peaceful use of outer space

The representative of Iran, Hassan Rahimi Majd, delivered a speech to the UN General Assembly regarding the exploration and use of outer space, held in New York on May 6.

Reaffirming Iran’s commitment to the principles outlined in the UN Charter and the international legal framework governing the activities of States in the exploration and use of outer space, he said, “Our position on outer space has been consistent and clear. We believe that outer space is the common heritage of all mankind and must be used, explored, and utilized for exclusively peaceful purposes and the benefit of all countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development, and without discrimination of any kind.”

“For more than four decades, the Conference on Disarmament (CD), by paragraph 80 of the Final Document of the Tenth Special Session of the General Assembly (SSOD-I), has been mandated to launch ‘appropriate international negotiations’ to prevent an arms race in outer space based on the spirit of the Outer Space Treaty. In this regard, all states with major space capabilities have a special responsibility to contribute positively and actively to the objective of the exclusively peaceful uses of outer space and the prevention of an arms race in outer space,” the envoy added.

Voicing Iran’s concern about the increasing threat of “weaponization of outer space”, Rahimi Majd said Iran reiterates the urgency of preventing an arms race in outer space and has consistently supported the start of negotiations on a comprehensive and legally binding instrument on PAROS at the CD.

“Matters on space activities, including safety, security, and stability, should be thoroughly discussed and analyzed within the scope of international specialized bodies under the United Nations. This notably includes the Conference on Disarmament and the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS),” he added.

The Iranian envoy also strongly condemned the instrumental and political exploitation of United Nations institutions and bodies, notably the Security Council, adding, “The long-awaited mandate of CD should not be converted to a political agenda of the UN Security Council. Such a move would downgrade the noble agenda of CD on PAROS as well as the objectives of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS).”

“Iran emphasizes the imperative of restoring the principle of multilateralism and striving for consensus on diverse issues through relevant specialized institutions, with the active participation of all member countries being paramount,” he stated.

“The amendment to the draft resolution outlined in document S/2024/302, proposed by China and the Russian Federation, aligned precisely with the longstanding mandate of preventing an arms race of all types of weapons in outer space through the early elaboration of a verifiable legally binding multilateral agreement. It aimed to address significant gaps and shortcomings within the draft resolution. Unfortunately, the United States did not accept this amendment, once again standing against the international community's aspirations to prevent an arms race in outer space,” the Iranian diplomat said.

“If the United States genuinely values addressing the critical issue of the weaponization of outer space, it should refrain from single-handedly impeding progress within the UN disarmament machinery on this front. The United States views outer space as a potential battleground, as evidenced by the establishment of the Space Force and Space Command, and the integration of commercial space enterprises into their space combat systems,” he noted.

“The adoption of a biased and self-serving approach by certain Western nations, particularly the United States, towards international treaties and conventions, such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, undermines the credibility of disarmament and non-proliferation efforts,” Rahimi Majd added.


News ID 214847


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