UN tells Israel to let in nuclear inspectors

My Catbird Seat December 6, 2012 3
UN tells Israel to let in nuclear inspectors

Editor's note:  The United Nations General Assembly is pressing Israel to reveal its nuclear arsenal. Israel has lashed out against the overwhelming approval of the resolution, which calls for international inspectors to be allowed to examine its atomic programme. Its foreign minister said the vote was meaningless. The country also rejected a UN-backed conference on a nuke-free Middle East. Israel denies it has nuclear weapons – but refuses to provide proof that it doesn't.

Today RT broadcast a program on Israel's recent refusal to open its arsenal to UN nuclear weapons inspectors.   RT's Paula Slier tried to lift the veil surrounding Israel's atomic programme. The segment featured IRmep research on Benjamin Netanyahu's past role illegally smuggling nuclear triggers from the United States. The story first surfaced in FBI files released [to IRmep] at the end of last year, from a seven-year investigation which began in 1985 and in Joseph Gelman's tell-all book "Confidential." They show how a network of front companies connected to the Israeli Defense Ministry smuggled nuclear triggers out of the United States to Israel.

Nuclear Israel: The secret that is not

The UN general assembly has overwhelmingly approved a resolution calling on Israel to open its nuclear programme for inspection.

The resolution, approved by a vote of 174 to six with six abstentions, calls on Israel to join the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) "without further delay" and open its nuclear facilities to inspection by the International Atomic Energy Agency. Those voting against were Israel, the US, Canada, Marshall Islands, Micronesia and Palau.

Resolutions adopted by the 193-member general assembly are not legally binding but they do reflect world opinion and carry moral and political weight. And the resolution adds to pressure on Israel as it faces criticism over plans to increase settlement in the West Bank, a move seen as retaliation for the assembly recognising Palestinian statehood.

Israel refuses to confirm or deny possessing nuclear bombs though it is widely believed to have them. It has refused to join the non-proliferation treaty along with three nuclear weapon states: India, Pakistan and North Korea.

Israel insists there must first be a Middle East peace agreement before the establishment of a proposed regional zone free of weapons of mass destruction. Its rivals in the region argue that Israel's undeclared nuclear arsenal presents the greatest threat to peace in the region.

While the US voted against the resolution, it voted in favour of two paragraphs in it that were put to separate votes. Both support universal adherence to the NPT and call on those countries that aren't parties to ratify it "at the earliest date". The only no votes on those paragraphs were Israel and India.

The vote came as a sequel to the cancellation of a high-level conference aimed at banning nuclear weapons from the Middle East. All the Arab nations and Iran had planned to attend the summit in mid-December in Helsinki, Finland, but the US announced on 23 November that it would not take place, citing political turmoil in the region and Iran's defiant stance on non-proliferation. Iran and some Arab nations countered that the real reason for the cancellation was Israel's refusal to attend.

Just before Monday's vote, the Iranian diplomat Khodadad Seifi told the assembly "the truth is that the Israeli regime is the only party which rejected to conditions for a conference". He called for "strong pressure on that regime to participate in the conference without any preconditions".

Israeli diplomat Isi Yanouka told the general assembly his country had continuously pointed to the danger of nuclear proliferation in the Middle East, singling out Iran and Syria by name. "All these cases challenge Israel's security and cast a dark shadow at the prospect of embarking on a meaningful regional security process," he said.

"The fact that the sponsors include in this anti-Israeli resolution language referring to the 2012 conference proves above all the ill intent of the Arab states with regard to this conference."

The Syrian diplomat Abdullah Hallak told the assembly his government was angry the conference was not going to take place because of "the whim of just one party, a party with nuclear warheads".

"We call on the international community to put pressure on Israel to accept the NPT, get rid of its arsenal and delivery systems, in order to allow for peace and stability in our region," he said.

The conference's main sponsors are the US, Russia and Britain. The British foreign office minister Alistair Burt has said it is being postponed, not cancelled.

Also see:

09/08/2012

Corbett Report : Israel's Nuclear Smuggling with Grant F. Smith

Grant F. Smith, Research Director at IRmep.org, joins James Corbett to discuss the secret Israeli espionage program that smuggled nuclear materials out of the United States to help start the Israeli nuclear program in the 1960s. They go over the declassified documents tying Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu (PDF) to a nuclear technology smuggling ring targeting the U.S. in the 1980s, and explore Smith's book, Divert!: NUMEC, Zalman Shapiro and the diversion of US weapons grade uranium into the Israeli nuclear weapons program.

3 Comments »

  1. Andrew December 7, 2012 at 9:51 am - Reply

    Israeli diplomat Isi Yanouka told the general assembly his country had continuously pointed to the danger of nuclear proliferation in the Middle East, singling out Iran and Syria by name. "All these cases challenge Israel's security and cast a dark shadow at the prospect of embarking on a meaningful regional security process," he said.
    His country singled out Iran and Syria? What about Iraq? What happened with them…stupid stupid stupid, now before any haters jump on me, just remember this, from the opium wars in China to Iran and Syria and every war in between, the main instigator has been the jews. Please look at what started all these wars.  Everyone blamed Hitler…They blamed Andrew Jackson who disabled the 2nd bank of America, they blamed Saddam Hussein…the list goes on. When will history tell us something?
     

  2. rexw December 11, 2012 at 4:01 pm - Reply

    Other than write on tis subject as often as possible, there seems little that one can do to keep this in front of the peoples of the world.
    Seldom has there been a game-changer like this subject.. The inability of Israel to comply to this vote should be an even more important reason to apply sanctions, so relevant to the cause of peace is this subject. They know it as well.
    The downside for ISRAEL is
    –loss of credibility
    –hypocrisy
    -an inability to generate any support for its Iran initiative from other countries
    -its inability to convinvethe US to go along with their warlike plans. Even the US would see the futility of supporting a nuclear powered Israel challenging a signatory to the NPT, Iran.
    If forced to become a signatory, they will need to conform to the rules.  and on it goes.
     
    The tired old whore of "not confirming or denying" has passed its use-by-date. One gets the impression that they know that as well.
    Get ready for the game of bluff and bluster. 
     
     

  3. Hans February 25, 2013 at 7:30 am - Reply

    The one problem with this UN decision is that Israel is a sovereign nation and the UN doesn't have the authority to tell Israel to do anything of the sort…
    As a sovereign nation it's Israel's decision whether or not it joins the NPT… And, as long as Israel hasn't joined the NPT the UN has no authority calling for Israel to open up it's nuclear facilities for inspections…

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