- AP News
- Abc News
The United Nations General Assembly continues its annual meeting Wednesday with addresses by leaders from Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan, Cuba and Britain, while the U.N. Security Council meets on the sidelines to discuss, among other things, Iran's influence in the Middle East and issues surrounding the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
The meeting will be chaired by U.S. President Donald Trump, who called on world leaders during his address before the Assembly on Tuesday to "isolate Iran's regime as long as its aggression continues."
"They do not respect their neighbors or their borders or the sovereign rights of nations. Instead, Iran's leaders plunder the nation's resources to enrich themselves and to spread mayhem across the Middle East and far beyond," President Trump said Tuesday.
Trump maintained that the 2015 nuclear deal to end Iran's nuclear weapons program, which he withdrew the United States from, was a "windfall for Iran's leaders" and boosted its military budget by nearly 40-percent to "finance terrorism and fund havoc and slaughter in Syria and Yemen."
The president said his administration started last month "reimposing hard-hitting nuclear sanctions that have been lifted under the Iran deal" and that more sanctions would be imposed on November 5 and beyond.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told the Assembly in his speech that no country can be brought to the negotiating table by force. Rouhani also questioned how Iran can enter into an agreement with the United States, which he said violates the policies of Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama. In addition, Rouhani accused the Trump administration of trying to render all global institutions ineffectual.
In the year since he made his U.N. debut, Trump has faithfully followed his America First policy by cutting funding to the world organization, withdrawn from the Paris Climate Agreement and the Iran nuclear deal, and quit U.N. bodies, including the Human Rights Council.