Saudis seek UN condemnation of plot to kill envoy
United Nations, November 16, 2011
Saudi Arabia's UN delegation said on Tuesday it will submit a draft resolution to the General Assembly soon that condemns an alleged plot to assassinate its US envoy and urges Iran to follow the law.
The draft resolution, provided to Reuters by the Saudi UN delegation, would have the 193-nation assembly say it "deplores the plot to assassinate the ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the United States of America."
It also condemns "terrorism in all its forms and manifestations" and "strongly condemns acts of violence against diplomatic and consular missions and representatives."
Abdulmohsen Alyas, the Saudi UN mission's spokesman, said his delegation would circulate the draft resolution to the assembly on Wednesday and was aiming to put it to a vote on Friday.
US authorities said last month they had uncovered a plot by two Iranian men linked to Tehran's security agencies to hire a hit man to kill ambassador Adel al-Jubeir. One man, Manssor Arbabsiar, was arrested in September while the other is believed to be in Iran.
Iran has denied the charges and expressed outrage, saying the allegations threaten stability in the Gulf, where Saudi Arabia and Iran, the biggest regional powers, are fierce rivals and Washington has a huge military presence.
The draft resolution does not directly accuse Iran of being responsible for the plot or call for a condemnation of Tehran. It does, however, urge Iran "to comply with all of its obligations under international law ... and to cooperate with states to bring to justice all those who participated in the planning, sponsoring, organization and attempted execution of of the plot to assassinate the (Saudi) ambassador."
The Saudi delegation expects that many UN member states will ask to jointly sponsor the non-binding General Assembly resolution, Alyas said.
"It's a clear signal that terrorist acts and acts of violence against any country, its citizens and its representatives should not pass without a proper response," he said.
Failure to condemn such acts would be tantamount to condoning them, he added.
Several diplomats told Reuters that Washington would probably be among the resolution's co-sponsors. Tehran has already complained to the UN about the US allegations, saying one of the alleged plotters the US calls an Iranian military official is really a member of the exiled Iranian rebel group Mujahideen Khalq Organization, which Washington has branded a terrorist group.
The MKO's umbrella group, the National Council of Resistance of Iran, said the Iranian accusation was "preposterous."
The General Assembly's human rights committee is also expected to adopt a separate resolution condemning the human rights situation in Iran later this week. The full assembly is expected approve the human rights resolution next month. - Reuters