Iran Calls UN Session on Protests Another Trump 'Foreign Policy Blunder'

Iran's UN envoy says country has 'hard proof' of foreign intervention in protests ■ Russia: 'Let Iran deal with its own problems'

(L to R) Member of the Iranian delegation Javad Safaei and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley attend a U.N. Security Council meeting concerning the situation in Iran, January 5, 2018
Drew Angerer/AFP

A United Nations Security Council meeting that centered on Iran's anti-government protests was another foreign policy blunder of U.S. President Donald Trump's administration, Iran's foreign minister wrote on his Twitter account. 

To really understand the Middle East - subscribe to Haaretz

"The UNSC rebuffed the naked [American] attempt to hijack its mandate ... Another FP [foreign policy] blunder for the Trump administration," Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted. 

Meanwhile, Iran's ambassador to UN told the Security Council that his government has "hard evidence" that recent protests in Iran were "very clearly directed from abroad." 

People protest in Los Angeles, California, U.S., in support of anti-government protesters in Iran,  January 3, 2018. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
LUCY NICHOLSON/REUTERS

Iranian Ambassador Gholamali Khoshroo also said the U.S. had abused its power as a permanent member of the Security Council by calling for a meeting to discuss the protests. 

>> Explained: The truth about the protests in Iran <<

"It is unfortunate that despite the resistance on the part of some of its members, this council has allowed itself to be abused by the current U.S. administration in holding a meeting on an issue that falls outside the scope of its mandate," Khoshroo said. 

Russia's UN envoy said the U.S. is "abusing the platform of the Security Council" by calling an emergency meeting on the protests that have roiled Iran in recent days.

Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said the demonstrations are a domestic matter, not an international security issue warranting the attention of the UN's most powerful body. "Let Iran deal with its own problems," he said.

U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said at the meeting that the United States stood "unapologetically with those in Iran who seek freedom for themselves, prosperity for their families, and dignity for their nation."

"We will not be quiet. No dishonest attempt to call protesters 'puppets of foreign powers' will change that. The Iranian people know the truth. And we know the truth," she said. 

"They are acting of their own will, on their own behalf, for their own future. Nothing will stop Americans from standing in solidarity with them. In 2009, the world stood by passively while the hopes of the Iranian people were crushed by their government. In 2018, we will not be silent," Haley added.

At least 21 people have been killed amid the anti-government rallies and unrest that began last week. Iran has also seen three days of large pro-government demonstrations.