Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif denied visa to travel US for attending the UN Security Council meeting in New York on Thursday.
US official claimed Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif denied visa that would have allowed him to attend meeting.
The refusal came as tensions escalate between the two countries after US killed Iran’s most prominent military commander, Qassem Soleimani, in Baghdad.
Under the 1947 UN “headquarters agreement,” the US generally required to allow access to UN for foreign diplomats.
But Washington says it can deny visas for “security, terrorism and foreign policy” reasons.
The US State Department declined to comment immediately.
Iran’s mission to the UN said:
“We have seen the media reports, but we have not received any official communication from either the US or the UN regarding Foreign Minister Zarif’s visa.”
Zarif wanted to attend a meeting of the Security Council on Thursday on the topic of upholding the UN Charter.
The meeting and Zarif’s travel had been planned before the escalation in tensions between Washington and Tehran.
The Security Council meeting would have given Zarif a global spotlight to publicly criticise the US for killing Soleimani.
Javad Zarif last travelled to US in September 2019 for annual gathering of world leaders at the UN – after the US sanctioned him for implementing “the reckless agenda of Iran’s Supreme Leader.”
Qassem Soleimani’s Funeral
Earlier Slain military commander, Qassem Soleimani’s funeral held in vast crowds in Tehran on Monday.
Mourners packed streets of Tehran for ceremonies to pay homage to top Iranian military commander.
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei led vast crowds in prayers at funeral.
The crowd clutched portraits of their hero and gathered at Tehran University.
On the other hand, Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei presided over prayers for the slain Iranian general.
Earlier, Qassem Soleimani killed in a U.S drone strike near Baghdad airport.