Trump administration denies Iran’s top diplomat visa to attend UN meeting: report

President Trump’s administration denied Iran’s foreign minister a visa to attend a United Nations Security Council meeting as tensions between the U.S. and Iran increase, Foreign Policy reported Monday.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif was reportedly denied access to the U.S. to address the Security Council at a Thursday meeting, three diplomatic sources told Foreign Policy.

The visa denial was in violation of the 1947 headquarters agreement mandating the U.S. allow foreign officials into the country to conduct U.N. business, according to the publication.

Zarif was expected to address the world for the first time after the U.S. conducted a strike killing Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani. 

The foreign minister reportedly filed for a visa a “few weeks ago” to discuss the importance of the U.N. Charter, a diplomatic source familiar with the matter told Foreign Policy. 

A Trump administration told U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres Monday that the U.S. would deny Zarif’s visa, a Washington-based diplomatic source told the news outlet.

The Hill reached out to the State Department for comment. The U.N. declined to comment. 

A spokesperson from the Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the U.N. said they had “not received any official word” from the U.S. government or the U.N. regarding Zarif’s visa.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has limited access to the U.S. by Iranian officials, including Zarif, to prevent their ability to bring their message to the U.S. public.

Iran has vowed retaliation against the U.S. for the strike that killed Soleimani last week. Trump responded by threatening to target 52 sites in Iran if the country retaliates, representing the 52 hostages taken in the 1979 crisis.

Iran also ended its commitment to the nuclear deal that Trump withdrew from in 2018 before imposing sanctions on the country.

—Updated at 7:06 p.m.

Tags death of soleimani Donald Trump Iran Iran strike Mike Pompeo Visa
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