As Iran Elected to UN Arms Control Post, Ros-Lehtinen Reiterates Call for Structural UN Reform to Prevent 'Inmates Running Asylum'

Statement

By:  Ileana Ros-Lehtinen
Date: July 11, 2012
Location: Washington, DC

U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, released the following statement regarding Iran's recent election to the bureau of the ongoing United Nations conference negotiating an Arms Trade Treaty: "Even as the Iranian regime funnels weapons to Assad and his thugs to butcher the Syrian people, the UN did nothing to block Iran from being elected to negotiate an Arms Trade Treaty. "Every week, it seems the UN finds a new way to hit bottom. Coming on the heels of the discovery that a UN agency supplied Iran and North Korea with sensitive technology, the election of Iran for this conference again shows whose agenda the UN is enabling. "Last year, North Korea and Cuba served consecutive terms as President of the UN Commission on Disarmament. How much longer can the UN's apologists make excuses for these outrages? How many more good U.S. taxpayer dollars will the Administration keep throwing after the bad? "It's time to end unconditional, no-strings attached funding to a UN that lets the inmates run the asylum. We need to leverage our contributions at the UN to achieve real reforms, which include ensuring that rogue regimes are not elevated to positions of power." NOTE: Ros-Lehtinen is the author of H.R. 2829, the United Nations Transparency, Accountability, and Reform Act of 2011, which requires the United Nations to switch its funding mechanism from an assessed basis to a voluntary basis. This shift will empower the U.S. and other member-states to use their strongest leverage at the UN -- their monetary contributions -- to press for badly needed reform. This legislation enjoys the support of more than 140 cosponsors, and was marked up and reported favorably by the House Foreign Affairs Committee last year.