Iran to Lodge Complaint against US over Visa Denial for UN Envoy

TEHRAN (Tasnim) — Iran plans to file a lawsuit against the US for its decision to refuse a visa to Hamid Aboutalebi, Tehran’s newly-appointed ambassador to the United Nations, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham said.

Iran to Lodge Complaint against US over Visa Denial for UN Envoy

“The US move to deny a visa to the Islamic Republic of Iran’s permanent representative and ambassador to the UN is in violation of the international laws and contrary to agreements signed between the UN and the US government,” Afkham stated on Sunday evening.

Iran is pursuing the case through official channels, the Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman added.

On Tuesday, The Senate voted to bar Hamid Abutalebi from the US and the White House said he will not be welcomed in the country, describing his nomination as “not viable”. The House of Representatives unanimously passed the same legislation on Thursday.

Under a 1947 law that established the headquarters of the United Nations in New York, the United States is obligated to issue visas to diplomats assigned there, even those it finds objectionable.

According to reports, Washington has decided to deny a visa to Abutalebi over his possible involvement in the takeover of the US embassy in Tehran during post-revolution incidents in 1979.

On November 4, 1979, and in less than a year after the victory of the Islamic Revolution that toppled a US-backed monarchy, Iranian university students that called themselves "students following the line of (the late) Imam (Khomeini)" seized the US embassy in Tehran.

The students justified the takeover by insisting that the compound had become a center of espionage and planning to overthrow the newly established Islamic system in Iran.

The students occupying the embassy later published documents proving that the compound was indeed engaged in plans and measures to overthrow the Islamic system.

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