Under the current situation of the international community, maintaining peace and avoiding conflict is one of the main foundations of values that underpins the overly broad system of relations between governments. According to the UN Charter, the actions of governments should never endanger peace. No government should hope that a disturbing deviation from UN standards will remain an exception because if a group of powerful countries find that they can easily bypass the UN Charter and without any reproach, except from public opinion, resort to force, we are likely to return to the same state of the law of the jungle.
If the restrictions enshrined in the UN Charter do not govern relations between countries, then what could prevent countries or other groups of countries that face a similar situation or a situation they believe allows the use of force, that is, resorting to force? Strategic or geopolitical motives may play a role in encouraging threats and then military action, but from a legal point of view, the question must be asked whether there was a threat to regional peace and stability that the Zionist regime allowed itself without the permission of the Security Council to sabotage?
The answer to this question is definitely negative; as it is clear, this regime has arbitrarily committed a criminal act and by widely interpreting concepts such as national security and… which, from the point of view of international law, is not a valid reason for military action or sabotage, has committed a blatant violation, which is interpreted as armed conflict (war) and with one interpretation is considered as a terrorist act.
Relying on the impact of international terrorism on international peace is the main feature of international terrorism. The UN General Assembly Resolution 61/40 of 1985 explicitly defines this feature: All acts, methods and practices of terrorism as criminal acts, including acts that endanger friendly relations between nations and their security, regardless of the perpetrator or perpetrators and the place of its occurrence are explicitly condemned.
Although the resolution was issued by consensus, its legal value does not exceed the recommendation, which has no performance guarantee. However, this achievement is important because it maintains and accelerates the unconditional conviction of terrorist acts. The 1937 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Terrorism (Geneva Convention 1937) can be considered the first international convention on terrorism. The international legal document says: States have a duty to refrain from any action in support of terrorism against other countries and to refrain from taking any action that would give rise to such activities.
International terrorism legally includes state terrorism. This was very evident in the international legal discourse of the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, and still holds its place today in counter-terrorism issues. Government counter-terrorism measures have often been condemned by the United Nations as forms of the use of force in international relations. General Assembly Resolution 39/159 considered the terrorist acts of states not only a threat to the independence of states, but also a violation of the right of all nations to independence, the right to autonomy, and international peace.
Whereas state terrorism is somewhat close to the definition of the use of force; and whereas firstly, the sovereignty of states, their integrity, and political independence are respected and recognized in international law, and secondly, the inalienable right of the people to determine their political, economic and social freedom from foreign interference is also one of the inviolable principles of international law, the violation of which is a violation of the international obligations of countries, therefore in the broad interpretation of state terrorism, it can be considered as the illegal use of force.
There is no doubt that in cases where international peace is damaged or threatened, the Security Council, given its key role in this regard, can impose some coercive measures and even resort to force. It is as if after the events of September 11, 2001, the United States passed resolutions that impose various obligations and duties on governments in the fight against terrorism. Of course, Security Council Resolution 1373 was quickly rejected on the issue of state terrorism, but it expected public support from all governments without any excuse or guilt. Under the resolution, governments are obliged, among other things, to prevent those who organize terrorism or facilitate terrorist activities with financial support, and not to allow their territory to be used against other states or nationals of other states.
So far, the task of the Zionist regime with its terrorist act is clear; now the question arises that based on the international responsibility of governments, what is the status of a government like the United States, as a staunch supporter of the Zionist regime, in the face of the Zionist regime’s terrorist act? It is not bad to know that if this had happened against the United States, given the vast powers that the Senate has given to the president of the United States, he could have acted not only against the countries that organize terrorist attacks and facilitate their occurrence with their help but take the right kind of action on the basis of this permission, he can also take the necessary action against the countries that shelter terrorists and terrorist organizations.
It should be noted, however, that the development of the concept of self-defense facilitates individual recourse to force and thus poses a serious threat to international security in the long run.
At present, the Islamic Republic of Iran has taken the legal route to deal with this terrorist act of the Zionist regime, and the United Nations and the Security Council are again under serious test; a test that in which they have unfortunately been repeatedly failed. In a letter to the UN Secretary-General regarding the sabotage in Natanz, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif warned: Deliberate attack on a safe nuclear facility – at high risk of potential release of radioactive material – is a criminal act of nuclear terrorism. Whereas this international crime could have far-reaching human and environmental consequences, those who planned, ordered, participated in, and carried out this cowardly act, have committed a war crime; a crime that should not go unpunished. Any power that is aware of or satisfied with this action must be held accountable as an accomplice to this war crime.
As a rule, the non-response of this and other letters leaves Iran free to defend itself in accordance with Article 51 of the UN Charter and will be more open in dealing with its enemies, based on the existing practices that the US has initiated with regard to the legitimate pre-emptive defense.