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No Rights No Peace

By       Message Daniel Pourkesali     Permalink
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One can not argue with Ms. Ebadi’s statement ,[1] that nuclear energy is the absolute right of every nation and that all nations including Iran.  And that the US must uphold and respect international laws. But her declaration that “the United States cannot have the right to deal with Iran outside the framework of international law” and insistence that Iran must abandon its rights under an international treaty to enrich uranium exposes her naïve unawareness of the very facts leading to Iran’s referral to the UN Security Council, which was scrupulously executed by the United States through coercion and intimidation [2] outside that very framework of international law.

Latest statement by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) [3] confirms that all previously undisclosed Iranian nuclear activities and material have been accounted for and none were diverted to a nuclear weapons program.  Meaning that Iran was in full compliance with its safeguards agreement which was the sole legal basis for persuading the IAEA Board of Governors to refer its case to the United Nations Security Council.

IAEA statutes only permit a referral to the UNSC when there has been a diversion of fissile material for non-peaceful use. Thus one could make a convincing case that absence of such violations of Article 19 of safeguards agreement would render the UNSC Resolution 1696 calling for a halt to uranium enrichment activity non-binding and would return Iran’s case to IAEA and Article IV of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) [4] which recognizes the "inalienable right" of every signatory state to have access to nuclear technology "to the fullest possible extent " and "without discrimination".

But a far more important fact often overlooked is that Iran or any other nation's right to nuclear technology does not originate from the NPT. It is a sovereign right already possessed by all nations regardless of their signatory status to this treaty. The NPT only recognizes these pre-existing rights which come from another fundamental principle of state sovereignty known as “jus cogens” [5], Latin for “compelling law” or "higher law" which can not be violated by any country.

Some of these principles are listed in the United Nations Charter under "Purposes and Principles” [6] section -- Respect for equal rights and self-determination; sovereign equality of States; fulfilment in good faith of international obligations; settlement of international disputes by peaceful means; and prohibition of the threat or use of force against other States in any manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations. UNSC resolutions seeking to deprive Iran of her "inalienable right" to technological progress based on non-existing violations of Article 19 safeguards agreement are contrary to these basic fundamental principles of international law.

The IAEA has repeatedly confirmed that there has been no such diversion and that all declared fissile material in Iran has been accounted for. Thus referral of Iran's file to the UNSC as a result of pressure on the IAEA Board members and coercion of India in the form of nuclear cooperation was in clear violation of the NPT and international law.

Benjamin Franklin has been quoted as saying “those who would give up liberty to purchase temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Ms. Ebadi’s insistence that Iran surrender all its sovereign rights to achieve peace with a handful of bullying western nations would do little to preserve peace and only serves to deprive Iran of its inalienable rights under international law.

[1] http://www.rferl.org/featuresarticle/2007/11/75b38ee4-e855-4617-9adc-083c341bfcb6.html

[2] http://www.hindu.com/2007/02/16/stories/2007021605671200.htm

[3] http://www.campaigniran.org/casmii/index.php?q=node/3332

[4] http://www.fas.org/nuke/control/npt/text/npt2.htm

[5] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peremptory_norm

[6] http://www.un.org/aboutun/charter/

 

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Daniel M Pourkesali is an Engineer with an Aerospace company in Northern Virginia specializing in development and manufacturing of flight dynamics, engineering and control systems.

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