Iran has paid off some $16.2 million in arrears it owed to the United Nations, and regained its voting rights in the 193-member United Nations General Assembly
“After more than 6 months of working on it, the UN today announced it has received the funds,” Iranian Ambassador to the UN Majid Takht Ravanchi said in a post on his Twitter account on Friday.
He emphasized that “illegal US sanctions” have led to the delay in settling the debts, saying they had “not just deprived our people of medicine; they have also prevented Iran from paying our dues in arrears to the UN.”
“ALL inhumane sanctions must be lifted NOW,” the Iranian diplomat added.
Takht Ravanchi’s tweet came after President of the UN General Assembly Volkan Bozkir said in a meeting on Friday that Iran has made a partial payment toward the United Nations budget that allowed the country to restore its voting rights.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has made the necessary payment to reduce its arrears below the amount specified in Article 19 of the Charter,” Bozkir said.
Iran is now able to vote in the General Assembly on Friday to elect five new non-permanent members of the UN Security Council for 2022-2023.
In a letter to the General Assembly president on June 2, United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres said Iran would need to pay at least 16,251,298 dollars to have its voting rights restored.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has criticized the United Nations’ decision to deprive Tehran of its voting rights in the Assembly due to arrears, saying the UN ignores the fact that US sanctions prevent Iran from paying even for food.