WASHINGTON (JTA) — President Obama emphasized containing Iran’s nuclear ambitions in a meeting with envoys to the United Nations Security Council.
Obama "underscored the importance of continued Security Council support for non-proliferation, building on the strong work that has been done to hold North Korea and Iran accountable for their failure to live up to their obligations," a White House statement said after the meeting Monday.
The United States has led the recent effort to intensify sanctions against Iran through enhanced sanctions passed by the council earlier this year and supplemental sanctions.
The range of topics discussed at the meeting included "nuclear non-proliferation, the Middle East, Haiti, Somalia, Sudan, Iran, North Korea and our shared efforts to combat terrorism," the statement said.
Attending the meeting were the 15 members of the current Security Council, including five permanent members — the United States, Russia, China, France and Britain — and the five nations set to assume seats in January. Ten of the council seats are for two-year terms, with five nations ascending to the council annually.
The Security Council is the only U.N. arm with enforcement powers.
Meanwhile, French Minister of State and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs Michele Alliot-Marie on Sunday told the European Jewish Congress that France will take "a strong stance againt Iran."
Alliot-Marie, addressing 100 European Jewish communal leaders representing 27 Jewish communities, said that European Jewry has enriched the culture of the continent and helped build its identity. She said she was pleased to be making her first speech to an international organization since assuming office.