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IPPNW statement on Suleimani killing

IPPNW condemns the deliberate and calculated murder of Iranian Major General Qassim Suleimani by US forces in Iraq. The killing of Gen. Suleimani in a drone strike authorized by the US President was not only a violation of international law and of long-standing US policy prohibiting assassinations of foreign officials, it has also further inflamed an already volatile region. A war between the US and Iran would have disastrous results and must be prevented.

IPPNW is particularly concerned that, as a direct result of this precipitous action, Iran has declared that it will no longer comply with the terms of the 2015 multinational agreement that has prevented it from developing a nuclear weapons capability. The Trump administration withdrew from that agreement in 2018, despite Iran’s compliance, which had been verified by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

US-Iranian relations have been strained—frequently to the breaking point—as far back as 1953, when the US helped depose Iran’s elected Prime Minister Mosaddegh, and 1979, when a revolutionary government removed the US-backed Shah and held 52 Americans hostage for more than a year.

The Iran nuclear agreement was seen by many, including IPPNW, as a stepping stone toward a more constructive period of international engagement with a country that will be crucial to any future negotiations for peace in the Middle East. That opportunity has now been squandered through the reckless and, apparently, politically motivated act of a US President who has repeatedly shown terrible judgment in international affairs.

IPPNW urges the US Congress to assert its constitutional authority and to prevent another unjustified war in a region that has been plagued by near-constant war for decades. We also urge leaders in the Middle East, Europe, and Asia to step up in this moment of crisis, and to work with Iran, Iraq, and other directly affected countries in pursuit of a meaningful and lasting peace. One long-overdue step toward this goal would be the negotiation of a Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone (MEWMDFZ).

All States that have not yet done so, including the US and Iran, should sign and ratify the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW), and follow through with the elimination of all nuclear weapons in the region and globally.

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