The United Nations Security Council’s international arms embargo against Iran is expected to expire in October. Washington has urged the Security Council to extend it, alleging that failing to do so could spark a new arms race in the Middle East.

The United States’ calls on other nations to extend the UN arms embargo against Tehran are “yet another attempt” by Washington to “distract from its continued #Economic terrorism on the Iranian people,” Iran’s ambassador to the UN Majid Takht-Ravanchi has tweeted.

According to the diplomat, the US' efforts are a violation of UN Security Council Resolution 2231, the 2015 resolution signed after the signing of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action Iran nuclear deal, which guaranteed Iran sanctions relief and an end to the UN’s arms embargo in exchange for Tehran’s commitment not to pursue nuclear weapons.

“But the US will not succeed in wooing others to violate international law,” Takht-Ravanchi assured.

The ambassador’s remarks follow a tweet by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Saturday urging the Security Council to extend the embargo and accusing Iran of being “the world’s leading state sponsor of terror.”

“The UN Security Council must extend the embargo before Iran’s violence escalates and they start a new arms race in the Middle East. The clock is ticking,” Pompeo warned.

Mikhail Ulyanov, Russia’s permanent representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency and other organizations in Vienna, responded directly to the secretary of state, pointing out that “usually an arms race is not unilateral,” but “a collective endevour either at the level of great powers or in the regional and subregional context.”

“A risk of an arms race can hardly be removed through an arms embargo against one country. This task requires collective efforts through negotiations,” Ulyanov stressed.

Last month, the Russian Foreign Ministry indicated that Moscow would block any attempts to extend the Security Council arms embargo against Iran so long as Tehran continues to reject the pursuit of nuclear weapons. “It is no use raising this matter in the Security Council. There are no grounds for this,” the ministry noted in response to US lobbying efforts, adding that “it is ridiculous that the country which has violated the resolution is now proposing to extend its provisions…”

The US unilaterally pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal in May 2018, slapping Tehran with tough energy and banking sanctions and prompting the deal’s European, Russian and Chinese signatories to scramble to try to save the agreement. Tehran has accused the deal’s European signatories of failing to live up to their commitment on sanctions relief, and has gradually reneged on some of the provisions of the deal, including limitations on uranium enrichment levels. Nevertheless, the country maintains its firm commitment not to pursue nuclear weapons or any other weapons of mass destruction.