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Iran Says Vetoed Yemen Resolution Another Failure For US

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif (R), and his deputy Abbas Araghchi talk during a press conference of President Hassan Rouhani (unseen) in Tehran on April 3, 2015.

(AFP) - Iran said on Tuesday that the vetoing of a UN resolution that would have criticized its role in Yemen represented another setback for the United States.

Russia vetoed a resolution at the UN Security Council on Monday that would have expressed concern over Iran's failure to block supplies of missiles to Yemen's Huthi rebels and called for "additional measures".

"Based on a one-sided report, they intended to pass a resolution that referred to Iran, but they failed," said Iran's deputy foreign minister Abbas Araghchi, according to the official IRNA news agency.

"This is yet another failure by the US government to drag Iran to the Security Council," he added.

The resolution was drafted by Britain, but strongly supported by the United States.

"Over the past year the US government has tried many times to drag Iran to the Security Council and it has failed every single time," said Aragchi, on the sidelines of an water conference in Tehran.

In January, Washington called an emergency session of the Security Council to discuss protests in Iran, only to face strong criticism from other members who said the move was hypocritical and inappropriate.

Later that month, a Security Council panel of experts released a report into missiles fired by the Huthis into Saudi Arabia, saying they were made in Iran.

The report did not say Iran had supplied the missiles, but said the country was still in breach of an arms embargo on Yemen by failing to stop them reaching the rebel group.

"The biased allegation was absolutely clear in the way the report was formulated," said Aragchi.

The investigating team had "made its own judgement even before traveling to Iran and hearing what we had to say. It was clear how others had influenced the report," he said, without specifying who was to blame.

After vetoing the British resolution on Monday, the Security Council unanimously adopted a Russian-drafted measure that extended the sanctions regime against Yemen for one year, but made no mention of Iran.

"We will definitely continue our policies in the region in the way that serves our national interests," Aragchi said.

Iran supports the Huthi rebels who seized control of much of Yemen including the capital Sanaa in 2014, but denies direct military involvement.

Regional rival Saudi Arabia has been bombing Yemen almost daily since 2015 in an attempt to dislodge the rebels.