Iran rejects US criticism of election to UN committee

Photo: Iran rejects US criticism of election to UN committee / Iran

Iran has dismissed US criticism of Tehran's election to the United Nations Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), PressTV reported.

On Thursday, Hamid Babaei, the spokesman for Iran's UN mission in New York, said Washington's criticism comes from "baseless accusations."

"Iran categorically rejects baseless accusations raised in the statement (of US Ambassador to UN Samantha Power) regarding status of human rights and civil liberties in the Islamic Republic of Iran, and finds these assertions both unconstructive, obstructive and against the spirit of cooperation between sovereign member states," he stated.

Babaei said Iran has routinely adopted an effective and constructive approach in relation to all multilateral issues within the framework of the UN.

"Civil society and thousands of NGOs are actively pursuing their goals in different areas such as social, economic, environmental, political, women, and human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran," he said, adding, "Against this backdrop, it is obvious that Iran's active presence in UN bodies will be helpful and serve the attainment of non-governmental organizations' objectives."

Iran was one of 19 members elected to the UN committee.

On Wednesday, Power protested to the election of Iran to the UN committee and accused Tehran of violating human rights laws.

Washington had previously announced that it would not grant a visa to Iran's newly-appointed ambassador to the world body, Hamid Aboutalebi, saying the diplomat was involved in the takeover of the US Embassy in Tehran during post-revolution incidents.

Iran has said that it is not considering a replacement for Aboutalebi and will pursue the issue through the UN.

On November 4, 1979, a group of Iranian university students took over the US Embassy in Tehran, which they believed had turned into a "den of espionage." Documents found at the compound later corroborated the claims by the students.

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