UN chief urges Iranian 'restraint' following tests

UN Secretary-General urges Iran to act with moderation and caution in the wake of its latest ballistic missile launch.

Ben Ariel ,

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday urged Iran to show “restraint” in the wake of its latest ballistic missile launch.

In a statement, Ban's spokesman said the UN chief called on the Iranian government “to act with moderation, caution and the good sense not to increase tensions through any hasty actions.”

The statement noted that in January, Security Council sanctions previously imposed on Iran through resolution 2231 (2015) were terminated following the release of a report by inspectors from the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The report confirmed the country had completed necessary preparatory steps to start the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action aimed at resolving the nuclear issue.

“In that resolution, the Secretary-General notes, the Council called upon Iran not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology,” said Ban’s spokesperson.

“The Secretary-General also notes that it is for the Security Council to examine information regarding resolution 2231 (2015),” it added, noting that the UN chief urges all concerned to act with restraint.

The United States has said that a series of recent apparent missile tests by Iran breach the terms of a UN Security Council resolution and will result in new economic sanctions -- either from Washington or the world body.

On Wednesday, Secretary of State John Kerry called his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif, to protest Tehran's latest round of ballistic missile tests.

Iran and the United States have no formal diplomatic ties, but Kerry and Zarif built a close working relationship during negotiations for last year's nuclear accord between Tehran and world powers.

Alsoon Wednesday, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, who is visiting Israel, said the United States would take action against Iran if its long-range ballistic missile tests were confirmed.