India’s Iran stance will be crucial at the U.N.

October 13, 2010

India took its deserved place at the world’s most powerful table on Tuesday, winning a two-year seat on the United Nations Security Council with the resounding support of 187 of the assembly’s 192 countries. India's Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee (L) speaks with Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad during an official meeting in Tehran. REUTERS/Morteza Nikoubazl

Immediately, the country’s U.N. Ambassador Hardeep Singh Puri began talking of his intent to use the tenure to push for reform, with an eye on a permanent berth for the Asian giant.

But the perennial issue of sanctions against Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s Iran and its nuclear ambitions are a more pressing — and complex — issue for India in its new role.

India, a key trading partner with Iran, has recently advocated an anti-sanctions stance, but under pressure from the U.S. voted for sanctions at the International Atomic Energy Association in 2006, and again at the U.N. General Assembly a couple of years later.

With the added responsibility of its new-found position as a global mediator, its position will come under greater scrutiny and further pressure from pro-sanctions states.

South Africa, which was also elected to the Council in New York on Tuesday, caused major headaches during its last two-year period with its reluctance to support sanctions.

If India sticks with its friendship with Iran, the two powerful emerging economies with the support of Brazil – which also has a close relationship with Tehran – could unite to seriously derail attempts from the U.S. and others to curb Ahmadinejad’s ambitions.

With fellow pro-reform country Germany also elected, and Brazil half-way through its temporary term, reform of the Council to expand permanent seats from the current five of the U.S., UK, France, China and Russia will certainly be a key issue.

But first, India will need to decide how best to wield its newly-acquired status.

3 comments

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I agree India should back Iran.

Posted by 777xxx777 | Report as abusive

India was ignored by USA for decades now supporting Pakistan, this was a tradition dating back to 1960′s in the Ghandi era.
US with pakistan and India allied itself with Russia just recently India signed a multi billion dollar deal with Russia for fighter jets, so it’s only a queston of time that India will align with Iran, India’s growing econmoy has a instatiable need for Petroleum products and Iran is thier answer. India and China will be economies to watch for 2020 onwards, unless something drastic happens. Time for the short sighted Europeons and USA to revise their startegies towards the Middle East particularly Iran.

Posted by politicaljunkie | Report as abusive

This is a meaningful stand from India, if there are no sanctions on Iran, we could soon look at a day when Iran too would a participant and come into main stream IAEA, to fight and win a different opinion like Iran the only way is through friendship, dialogue and by becoming a part of the debate, acknowledging their side of the argument and recognizing it, so far Iran has made only statements and not gone to any war, nor has used nukes for destructive purposes, this stand would coerce Iran to make responsible statements and then conduct responsibly, I have no doubt that they cannot, inclusive dialogue is a win-win going forward.

Posted by pereiraarvindin | Report as abusive