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Since July 1987, over 40 convoys have been completed.

We also have been able to reduce for levels stationed in and

around the Gulf.

No one should conclude from the restructuring

of our naval forces in the area that our commitment has

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commitment to help protect our friends in the region from

Iranian intimidation, to help keep international waterways free

of mines and thus to ensure access to the vital oil reserves of

the region and has helped to strengthen our bilateral relations

not only with the Gulf Arab states but with other moderate


Our overall goal, of course,

remains a negotiated end to the

Iran-Iraq war, in accordance with Resolution 598 of the Security


Since the passage of Resolution 598 last July, we have

actively supported Secretary General Perez de Cuellar's efforts

to obtain compliance with 598's call for a comprehensive


Iraq has agreed to accept 598 and has repeated its

acceptance a number of times.

Unfortunately, Iran seems more

interested in diplomatic maneuvering to make the best of a bad



Iran continues to insist on rewriting 598 by calling for


an international condemnation of Iraq as the aggressor as a precondition for willingness to implement Resolution 598 mandatory Resolution which cannot be made an object of bargaining.

We therefore came to the conclusion some time ago that

enforcement measures

specifically an arms embargo,


be needed to start a process that would bring Iran to accept


A draft Resolution has been circulated to all the members

of the Security Council.

Our objective was to bring that

Resolution to a vote during our Presidency of the Security

Council in February.

That effort was blocked in large measure

by Soviet unwillingness to proceed.

The Secretary discussed

this issue intensively in Moscow during his visit in February,

and I raised it in my own talks last week in Moscow.

We are deeply disappointed by Soviet reluctance to proceed,

despite repeated assurances

including to Secretary Shultz in

Moscow last month

that the Soviets would now support passage

of a second resolution.

We view our objective of securing an

arms embargo against Iran not as

a punitive measure, but as a

necessary step towards peace.

This issue will be high on the

agenda for Secretary Shultz when he meets next week with Foreign

Minister Shevardnadze in Washington.


The recent resumption of the "war of the cities," and the

attendant death and destruction arising from missile attacks on civilian areas, has underscored the need for the earliest

settlement of the Iran-Iraq war in all its aspects.

We have

condemned attacks on civilian targets by both sides.

They are

the latest expression of the horror of this war,

now in its

eighth year.

We are using our diplomatic influence in Iraq to

urge an end to the current cycle.

These attacks, however,


symptoms of a larger problem; they are not the problem itself.

We are convinced that implementation of Resolution 598 is the

best, perhaps only, path to peace.

Half measures, such as the

Soviet Union's proposal for a Security Council resolution

focussed narrowly on the war of the cities, are inadequate.

As you know, Mr. Chairman, an important element of our

policy has been our objective of limiting the sale of arms to

Iran. 1987 was been one of the busiest - and most successful years for Operation Staunch since its initiation in December


We made approximately 40 demarches to more than 20


The most positive results were achieved in Western Europe.

In 1984, 15 Western European nations sold more than $1 billion

In 1987, this dropped to 6 nations selling

of arms to Iran.

about $200 million in arms.

In Austria, Spain, and elsewhere

in Europe, media inquiries into alleged arms sales to Iran have mobilized public interest and sparked political controversy.


As a result, Iran generally has not been able to buy the

parts and replacements for the modern Western weaponry

inherited from the Shah's regime and has found it difficult to

buy new high-tech, modern military systems from the West.


has been forced to pay high prices, buy in small lots, and ship

through slow, roundabout channels. We believe that this has had a significant effect on Iranian military capabilities.

Partly as a result of declining purchases in the West,

Iran has become increasingly dependent on Soviet-type weaponry

imported from China, North Korea, and Eastern Europe.

It is believed that China supplied Iran with well over half

of its arms imports in 1987, including surface-to-air missiles,

artillery and ammunition.

We have made major efforts to

persuade China to reduce arms exports to Iran, focusing on

exports of destabilizing anti-ship missile systems such as the

These efforts have included requesting a delay in


COCOM of further liberalization of some dual use items for


We discussed this issue further with Chinese Foreign

Minister Wu on March 7-8.

In those talks, the Secretary

explained our

concern about international arms sales to Iran,

particularly arms

that are capable of hitting ships in the


At the same

time he expressed U.S. satisfaction that

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China had halted shipment of Silkworm anti-ship missiles, said

that we would begin taking measures to move ahead on

liberalization of the COCOM tech transfer regime, and stressed China's actions and deeds would be important in enabling this process to proceed. Wu in turn promised that China would

"participate actively" in discussions of a follow-on resolution

and would vote in favor of such a resolution if the majority of ..

the Security Council supported it.

Mr. Chairman, our Persian Gulf policy has succeeded in its

objective of restoring American credibility in this area vital

to the economic health of the West.

Our diplomatic efforts to

bring Iran to the negotiating table continue.

Our naval

deployment and our diplomacy have deterred Iran, and given

heart to our friends in the area.

The restrained use of

military power has been matched to the pursuit of achievable political objectives. Staying power will be required, but we are convinced we are on the right path, and we intend to keep a

constant course.


Finally, I would like to touch on the question of u.s. arms

sales to the Near East and South Asia.

The full committee was

briefed in closed session on the Administration's arms sales

proposals for CY 1988, covering all major weapons sales

considered eligible for approval in the coming year.

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