RNA - The council will vote later on Monday on extending sanctions against Yemen for another year, but the UK is pushing a resolution that calls for “additional measures” against Iran over accusations that it violated an arms embargo on the war-torn Arabian Peninsula state.
A group of UN experts monitoring the sanctions on Yemen reported to the Security Council in January that it had “identified missile remnants, related military equipment and military unmanned aerial vehicles that are of Iranian origin and were brought into Yemen after the imposition of the targeted arms embargo.”
The UN experts, however, said they were unable to identify the supplier.
Both Tehran and Sana’a have repeatedly rejected the allegations as a fabricated scenario, and said the armed forces of Yemen have strengthened their missile power on their own.
The Houthi movement has been defending Yemen against a bloody Saudi-led military campaign, which was launched in 2015 with the help of the US and the UK to reinstall the country’s former Riyadh-friendly government.
The Saudi war on Yemen has so far killed around 13,600 people and reduced much of the country’s infrastructure, including hospitals, schools, and factories, to rubble.
Russia, which is expected to veto the UK-proposed text, submitted its own drafted text on Saturday which would renew the sanctions regime on Yemen until February 2019 without any reference to Iran.
Moscow says the UN report’s findings are not conclusive enough to justify action against Tehran.
Negotiations continued Sunday and London, Paris and Washington initially sought a “condemnation” of Iran, but that was dropped later.
The final draft resolution expresses “particular concern” that “weapons of Iranian origin were introduced in Yemen after the imposition of the targeted arms embargo” and that Tehran was in “noncompliance” with UN resolutions.
The UN Security Council would express “its intention to take additional measures to address these violations,” it says.
The motion comes after Britain proposed a UN Security Council praise of Riyadh and the United Arab Emirates for pledging funds to allegedly ease the humanitarian crisis of their own making in Yemen.
The proposal coincided with fresh criticisms of the Saudi-led military campaign against Yemen by UN experts and rights groups.
Saudi Arabia has imposed an all-out blockade on Yemen’s ports, depriving the Arab world's most impoverished nation of direly-needed food and medicine.
Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said on February 21 that instead of targeting Iran, the UN’s proposed measure should focus on the issue of sanctions against Yemen.