The UN Security Council passed a weakened resolution giving Iran until Aug. 31 to suspend uranium enrichment or face the threat of economic and diplomatic sanctions.
American UN Ambassador John Bolton
Notice the emphasis...the threat of sanctions rather than actual sanctions.
Iran immediately rejected the resolution.
"All along it has been the persistence of some to draw arbitrary red lines and deadlines that has closed the door to any compromise," said Iran's U.N. Ambassador Javad Zarif. "This tendency has single-handedly blocked success and in most cases killed proposals in their infancy.
"This approach will not lead to any productive outcome and in fact it can only exacerbate the situation."
Zarif told the council it had no legal legitimacy to demand Iran suspend uranium enrichment and reprocessing. He repeated Iran's claim that it has every right to pursue nuclear technology
The watering down of the resolution was the product of Russian and Chinese demands; earlier drafts would have made the threat of sanctions immediate. The resolution now only requires the UN Security Council to hold more discussions before taking any action.
The resolution calls on the International Atomic Energy Agency, headed by our old pal
The resolution passed by a vote of 14-1. Qatar, which represents Arab states on the council, cast the lone dissenting vote.Now, there's a surprise.
As readers to this site know, Iran has said it would reply to the incentives package offered as a carrot by the west on August 22nd. The special significance of that date for Iran can be seen here.
The frustrating part is that after all the diplospeak and delay, sanctions are a remote possibility since Russia and China have already said they would veto them. And even if that little hurdle was jumped, sanctions would be meaningless since Russia and China along with certain nations in the EU would not abide by them. We saw how that worked with Iraq, where UN members simply ignored the sanctions to trade with SaddamHussein and sell him weapons.
Talk is cheap, and it's especially cheap at the UN.
And meanwhile, a nuclear armed Iran gets closer and closer.