President Rouhani calls on UNSC, ICAO to condemn US aerial terrorism
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has censured the recent harassment of an Iranian passenger plane by two US jet fighters as an instance of "aerial terrorism" and called on the UN Security Council and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to react against that.
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Speaking during a cabinet meeting in Tehran on Wednesday, Rouhani said the enemies of Iran are growing more and more frustrated as all their pressure tactics against the nation have failed to produce their desired results.
The enemies have thus resorted to a new scenario, “brazenly making dangerous mischief in international airspace,” he added.
“Where are the ICAO, the Security Council, the United Nations and the countries of the region? The state where the violation took place and the one that was the destination of the flight should all speak out,” he added.
On Thursday, two US F-15 warplanes conducted a dangerous maneuvering close to Mahan Air’s Flight 1152 that had taken off from Tehran and was heading to Beirut.
The incident took place over Syria’s al-Tanf region, where the US maintains an illegal military presence.
The US harassment led the pilot of Iranian passenger plane to swiftly lower the altitude to avoid a collision with the American jets, leaving several passengers injured.
“How is it possible for a fighter jet to fly close to a passenger jet through a free international route and on a specific aviation route and terrorize people?” asked Rouhani. “This is undoubtedly [an instance of] aerial terrorism.”
“The individual who sends a fighter jet next to a passenger plane has committed an act of aerial terrorism and should be treated as a terrorist. The ICAO, the Security Council and countries must confront [that party],” Rouhani said.
He further referred to the US downing of Iran Air Airbus A300B2 over the Persian Gulf on July 3, 1988, which killed 290 people, saying the Americans have a history of such acts, but for them to do this in a third country is outrageous.
The president also slammed the US’s attempt to exert “maximum pressure” on the Iranian nation, saying the Americans have been “begging” the East and the West to deprive the Iranians from their rights under the 2015 nuclear deal and UNSC Resolution 2231 that entail the lifting of the UN arms embargo on Iran.
“Day and night, the White House brokers go from one country to another and make a phone call after another,” and all to no avail, he said.
Rouhani made the remarks in reference to recent visits by US Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook to a range of countries, where he discussed extending a UN arms ban against Iran, which is set to expire on October 18.
“All these mischiefs and these games are because they faced defeat on any path they took against Iran,” the president said.
“We tell the White House statesmen that you have only one option left in the face of Iran, and that is observing rights, law, agreements and regulations and compensating for the damages you caused to the Iranian people. That means you have no second option,” he said.