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Lawmaker: UAE Island Construction Would Have Legal Consequences

Service : Politic
TEHRAN, March 6 (ICANA) – An Iranian lawmaker has warned the United Arab Emirates of any attempt to build man-made islands in the Persian Gulf as it would have legal consequences for the tiny sheikhdom.
Sunday, March 06, 2011 10:34:35 PM
Lawmaker: UAE Island Construction Would Have Legal Consequences

Hossein Sobhani-nia, a senior member of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Commission told ICANA that the issue had been taken up by the Commission six months ago and it was decided to follow up the case through Iranian diplomacy.

The legislator criticized the Iranian diplomatic machine for failing to provide the national security commission with a report on the issue.

He said construction of artificial islands would extend the UAE marine borders and increase its control of free waters.

Environmental experts believe the UAE decision to create the man-made islands would also cause ecological problems in the Persian Gulf.

It would also shorten the land distance between the UAE and Iran’s Abu Musa Island by 10 km which could affect Iran’s security and defense issues.

Abu Musa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs are three Iranian islands in the Persian Gulf the UAE has falsely laid claims on.

Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said last week the construction of such islands could have security as well as ecological consequences for the region. He further called for cooperation between the Persian Gulf littoral states in order to prevent any security or ecological problem.

This comes as the UAE has repeatedly laid claims to three Persian Gulf islands of the Greater Tunb, Lesser Tunb and Abu Musa. The three islands in question have historically been part of Iran, proof of which can be found and corroborated by countless historical, legal and geographical documents in Iran and other parts of the world.

The islands temporarily fell under British control in the 1800s but were returned to Iran on November 30, 1971 through a legal procedure that preceded the establishment of the United Arab Emirates as a state.

Iran has repeatedly announced readiness to hold direct talks with UAE officials regarding the misunderstandings over the implementation of the 1971 Memorandum of Understanding.

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Yahya Rahim-Safavi, senior military adviser to the Leader of the Islamic Revolution, said: “The UAE has breached international law” requiring any coastal country to inform other littoral states of any decision to construct artificial islands and get their approval before they start to do so.

The Iranian commander also warned that the construction of such islands will disturb the balance of the regional the ecosystem. He also warned Iran could impose trade restrictions on UAE that in order to prevent the construction of islands.

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