Welcome to the United Nations

The JCPOA remains the best available option for ensuring a peaceful nuclear programme by Iran, says USG DiCarlo






New York, 6 July 2023


Thank you, Madam President, for the opportunity to brief the Council on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and the implementation of resolution 2231 (2015).

The conclusion of the Plan and its endorsement by the Council eight years ago were the result of intensive negotiations to achieve the common objectives of nuclear non-proliferation and regional security, in a manner that delivers tangible economic benefits for the Iranian people.

When I last briefed the Council on this issue in December 2022, all participants to the Plan and the United States had reaffirmed that a return to the full and effective implementation of the Plan was the only viable option to resolve the Iranian nuclear issue. Six months later, negotiations to restore the Plan remain stalled.

Diplomacy is the only way to effectively address the Iranian nuclear issue. It is essential that all parties renew the dialogue as quickly as possible and reach an agreement on the outstanding issues.

In this context, I reiterate the Secretary-General’s appeal to the United States to lift or waive its sanctions as outlined in the Plan and to extend waivers with regard to the trade in oil with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

And I echo his call on Iran to reverse the steps it has taken that are not consistent with its nuclear related commitments under the Plan. It is also important for Iran to address concerns raised by participants in the Plan and by other Member States in relation to annex B of resolution 2231 (2015).

In a welcome development, in March of this year, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Iran issued a joint statement “to expedite… the resolution of outstanding safeguards issues” and “to allow the IAEA to implement further appropriate verification and monitoring and reporting activities”.

In its report of May 2023, the IAEA reported that, in line with this joint statement, it had installed surveillance cameras at workshops where centrifuge parts are manufactured. The Agency added that it had no further questions regarding the presence of high enriched uranium detected at one location.  

This encouraging step notwithstanding, we are alarmed that the Agency remains unable to verify the stockpile of enriched uranium in the country.

It estimates that Iran now has a total enriched uranium stockpile of more than twenty times the allowable amount under the (JCPOA). This includes increased quantities of uranium enriched to 20% and 60%. Such a stockpile of enriched uranium is of serious concern.

Madam President,

I will now turn to the restrictive measures set out in annex B, as outlined in the Secretary-General’s fifteenth report on resolution 2231 (S/2023/473).

First, on the nuclear-related provisions, no new proposals were submitted to the procurement channel in the last six months.  

The Council, however, received ten notifications, submitted pursuant to paragraph 2 of annex B, for certain nuclear-related activities consistent with the Plan.

The renewal by the United States of waivers with respect to certain nuclear non-proliferation projects foreseen in the Plan and the nuclear-related provisions in annex B to resolution 2231 for another 180-day period was an important step.

Second, regarding the ballistic missile-related provisions, France, Germany, Iran, Israel, the Russian Federation and the United Kingdom provided information to the Secretary-General and the Council concerning a test flight of a space launch vehicle conducted by Iran in March of this year.

We also received information from these same Member States about the testing and unveiling of two new ballistic missiles by Iran in May and June, respectively.

The letters received from Member States continue to reflect the divergent views as to whether this launch and missile developments are inconsistent with the resolution.

Third, we examined information related to paragraph 4 of annex B.

This paragraph pertains to the supply, sale or transfer to or from Iran of all items, materials, equipment, goods and technology as set out in Council document S/2015/546 which require prior approval of the Council.  It includes the list of complete delivery systems and subsystems, as well as the associated components and equipment, including ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and other Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) systems with a range of 300 km or more.

In the reporting period, we received information from the United Kingdom about ballistic missile parts seized by the British Royal Navy in February 2023, in international waters in the Gulf of Iran.

The United Kingdom shared imagery of the seized components and its analysis that the components were of Iranian origin and transferred in a manner inconsistent with resolution 2231.

The Permanent Representatives of France, Germany and the United Kingdom conveyed their view that some of the seized components are controlled items listed in the Document S/2015/546 and that their transfer without prior approval of the Council was therefore inconsistent with the resolution.

In their responses, Iran and the Russian Federation stated that there was no evidence linking the intercepted vessel and its cargo to Iran, and no clear indication that the seized components were of Iranian origin. We continue to analyze the available information.  

We also received letters from Ukraine, France, Germany and the United Kingdom concerning alleged transfers of unmanned aerial vehicles from Iran to the Russian Federation, in a manner inconsistent with paragraph 4 of annex B.

The United Kingdom and Ukraine also provided photographs and their analyses of the UAVs recovered in Ukraine. The two countries assessed the devices to be of Iranian types Shahed-131, Shahed-136 and Mohajer-6, and that they had been transferred by the Islamic Republic of Iran in a manner inconsistent with resolution 2231.

Their assessment was based on comparison with debris of other UAV attacks in the Middle East and with imagery of Iranian UAVs available via open sources.

France, Germany, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and the United States also reiterated their request for the Secretariat to examine the debris of these UAVS in Kyiv or any other suitable location in letters to the Secretary-General and President of the Security Council and in statements to the Council and media.

The Permanent Representatives of Iran and the Russian Federation disputed the imagery and evidence provided by the United Kingdom and Ukraine of the UAVs, as well as the claim by France, Germany, Ukraine and the United Kingdom that Iran had transferred UAVs to the Russian Federation in a manner inconsistent with resolution 2231, noting that the accusations were not substantiated by evidence.

The Secretariat continues to examine the available information.

The Secretariat also received an invitation from the Government of Yemen to examine the debris of a cruise missile used in an attack by the Houthis on the Al-Dhaaba oil terminal last November. The Secretariat is still analyzing the available information.

Finally, the Secretariat did not receive any official information alleging actions inconsistent with the assets freeze provisions of the resolution.

Madam President,

Eight years since the conclusion of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and its endorsement by the Council, we remain convinced that the plan is the best available option for ensuring the exclusively peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear programme, as well as for allowing Iran to reach its full economic potential.  

In closing, I would like to thank Her Excellency, Ms. Vanessa Frazier for her leadership as Facilitator for resolution 2231, as well as the Coordinator of the Procurement Working Group of the Joint Commission for our continued cooperation.

Thank you, Madam President.