WASHINGTON: The Obama Administration has publicly expressed its displeasure over world leaders attending the summit meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement in Tehran.
"This is an organization that we're not a member of. Our point is simply that Tehran, given its number of grave violations of international law and UN obligations, does not seem to be the appropriate place," the State Department spokesperson, Victoria Nuland, told reporters at her daily news conference yesterday.
Responding to questions on the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon traveling to Tehran to attend the NAM Summit, Nuland said: "We've made our views known that we think that this is a strange place and an inappropriate place for this meeting."
NAM is being attended by several global leaders including the Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, and the Pak President, Asif Ali Zardari.
Iran, which is at loggerheads with the US and other western countries, is building this meet as a major diplomatic achievement.
According to the FARS news agency over 30 heads of States have announced their readiness to attend the 16th NAM Summit in Tehran from August 26 to 31.
Nuland said if the UN Secretary General does choose to go to Tehran to attend the NAM Summit, the US hopes that he would go in the context of all of the violations of UN obligations that Iran is engaged in now.
"The fact that the meeting is happening in a country that's in violation of so many of its international obligations and posing a threat to neighbors ... Sends a very strange signal with regard to support for the international order, rule of law.
"We have made that point to participating countries. We've also made that point to (the UN) Secretary General Ban Ki-moon," Nuland said in response to a question.
"If he does choose to go, we hope he will make the strongest points of concern," she stressed.