Iran regained its vote in the UN General Assembly on Friday after the United States enabled Tehran to use funds frozen in South Korea to pay some $16 million it owed to the world body.
Iran lost its vote in the 193-member General Assembly in January because it was more than two years in arrears. It owed a total of more than $65 million, but paid the minimum amount needed to regain its vote.
For the latest headlines, follow our Google News channel online or via the app.
“Iran has paid the minimum amount due,” UN spokesman Farhan Haq said on Friday, confirming Iran could vote again.
Iran says $20 billion of its oil revenue has been frozen in countries like South Korea, Iraq and China since 2018 under sanctions imposed by then-US President Donald Trump.
“Illegal US sanctions have not just deprived our people of medicine; they have also prevented Iran from paying our dues in arrears to the UN,” Iran’s UN Ambassador Majid Takht Ravanchi posted on Twitter.
“After more than 6 months of working on it, the UN today announced it has received the funds.”
Iran was able to vote in the General Assembly on Friday to elect five new members of the UN Security Council.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry said that it had proposed to the United Nations that it could use funds frozen in South Korea to pay its dues. It said the world body followed up with the US Treasury Department to get the appropriate approvals.
“The permit was recently issued and the process of withdrawing the membership fee from Iran’s account in the Korean banks and transferring it to the UN account in Seoul has been paved, and this payment will be made soon,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said last week.
When asked about the issue last week, the US Treasury Department said it “does not comment on specific licenses.”
The UN payment comes as US President Joe Biden’s administration and Iranian officials are expected to begin their sixth round of indirect talks in Vienna this weekend about how both sides might resume compliance with a 2015 nuclear deal.
Under the deal with key world powers, Iran limited its nuclear program to make it harder to obtain fissile material for atomic weapons in return for relief from US, European Union, and UN sanctions.
However, Trump abandoned the deal in 2018, arguing it gave Tehran too much sanctions relief for too few nuclear restrictions, and reimposed sanctions that slashed Iran’s oil exports. Iran then retaliated about a year later by violating the limits on its nuclear program.
Russia to supply Iran with advanced satellite: Washington PostRussia is preparing to provide Iran with an advanced satellite that would enable it to track potential military targets across the Middle East, the ... Middle East
Iran judiciary chief stages first campaign rally despite virusIran’s leading presidential candidate staged a mass rally in the country’s southeast that drew thousands of supporters, sparking controversy Thursday ... Middle East
US drops sanctions on Iranian oil executives in ‘routine step’The US said on Thursday it had removed sanctions on three former Iranian officials and two companies that previously traded Iranian petrochemicals, a ... Middle East
Iran prepared to speedily ramp up oil output if US sanctions easedIran is planning a speedy increase in its oil output, a senior oil ministry official said on Wednesday, as talks continue between Tehran and six major ... Energy
US: Iran nuclear talks to resume over the weekend, elections ‘complicating factor’Negotiations between Iran and the world powers on how to revive the 2015 nuclear accord will resume over the coming weekend, US Deputy Secretary of ... Middle East
Iraq frees pro-Iran PMU commander Qasim Muslih arrested over activist murderIraq’s justice system freed a commander of the state-affiliated Popular Mobilization Unit (PMU) paramilitary militia coalition on Wednesday, two weeks ... Middle East
IAEA monitoring as agreed with Iran must continue or risk nuclear deal talks: USMonitoring of Iran’s activities by the UN nuclear watchdog as outlined in an agreement recently extended until June 24 must be allowed to continue or ... Middle East