US and Iran hold dueling press events at UN General Assembly

World Today

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani speaks during a news conference, Thursday, Sept. 26, 2019, in New York. Rouhani urged the United States on Thursday to “cease this policy of maximum pressure” in favor of “dialogue, and logic and reason.” Rouhani’s comments came one day after he accused Washington of engaging in “international piracy” against Iran by re-imposing economic sanctions after the U.S. withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

At the United Nations General assembly Iran and the United States hold dueling press conferences.

CGTN’s Nathan King reports it took place as the U.N. held a special session on the elimination of nuclear weapons.

Scrapping nuclear weapons was the subject of the first U.N. General Assembly resolution back in 1946. Nearly 75 years later, fears are that the threat of nuclear war is now growing.

Achieving global nuclear disarmament is one of the oldest goals of the United Nations. It was the subject of the General Assembly’s first resolution in 1946. After general and complete.

“Sadly, I fear that not only has that progress come to a halt, it is going in reverse. Relations between nuclear-armed states are mired in mistrust. Dangerous rhetoric about the utility of nuclear weapons is on the rise. A qualitative nuclear arms race is underway. The painstakingly constructed arms control regime is fraying,” said Antonio Guterres the United Nations Secretary-General.

The U.N. Chief was talking about the recent abandonment of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty between the U.S. and Russia and fears about the deployment of these weapons in Europe and Asia. The U.N. is also deeply concerned that other longstanding nuclear treaties may start to unravel.

Meanwhile, the standoff over the Iran nuclear deal continues with dueling media messages between Tehran and Washington.

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani told the world’s press that Iran was not behind the recent attacks on Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities.

“Those who accuse others, those are the parties who should be held responsible to show proof, to show evidence to back up those allegations or accusations. If this attack didn’t come from the south, came from the north or the west or the east. Those who make the allegations must provide the needed proof to back up such allegations,” said Hassan Rouhani the Iranian President.

As Rouhani was addressing the press, Washington announced that it is banning all senior Iranian government officials from traveling to the United States.

“President Trump yesterday signed a presidential proclamation banning Iranian elites and their family members from traveling to the United States. For years, Iranian regime elites have shouted “Death to America.” Meanwhile, their relatives have come here to live and to work. No more,” said Mike Pompeo the U.S. Secretary of State.

Brian Becker on UN Int’l Day to Eliminate Nuclear Weapons

Brian Becker, executive director of the antiwar and civils rights organization, ANSWER Coalition, talked with CGTN’s Mike Walter about what’s keeping the world from eliminating nuclear weapons.