Russia vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution on Monday that would have placed pressure on Iran by condemning the nation for violating an arms embargo by sending Iranian weapons to Yemen’s Shiite Houthi rebels.
The British-drafted resolution was reportedly backed by the United States, England, and France, and it had 11 votes in support of it. The U.N. Security Council consists of 15 member nations and Al Jazeera noted that Russia used its veto, and other member states abstained from voting, preventing the resolution from passing.
Bolivia also voted no and China and Kazakhstan abstained.
The draft resolution reportedly condemned Iran for a Houthi missile strike in December 2017 that targeted Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, indicating that Iran was not in compliance with a 2015 U.N. arms embargo on Yemen. According to Al Jazeera, the draft also urged members of the U.N. Security Council to take further action against Iran for breaching the arms embargo.
Despite Iran’s denial of aiding Yemen with military weapons, a panel of experts from the U.N. Security Council found in January that missiles fired into Riyadh were manufactured in Iran. “Design characteristics and dimensions of the components inspected by the panel are consistent with those reported for the Iranian designed and manufactured Qiam-1 missile,” the study was quoted by Reuters as saying.
According to the New York Times:
Despite the rancor over that resolution, which was drafted by Britain and strongly backed by the United States, the Council then unanimously approved a Russian-drafted resolution that renewed the embargo and the panel’s mandate. That resolution conspicuously avoided the issue of Iranian weapons in Yemen.
The U.N. Security Council, instead, unanimously adopted a Russian-proposed resolution that did not mention Iran, Al Jazeera wrote.
Al Jazeera noted that earlier on Monday, “Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov discussed with his Saudi counterpart Adel al-Jubeir the drafting of a new UNSC resolution on Yemen.”