UANI Condemns MTN for Pressuring South Africa to Vote in Support of Iran's Nuclear Program, Calls for Sanctions Against MTN


August 27, 2012

Contact: Nathan Carleton, [email protected] 

Phone: (212) 554-3296  


UANI Condemns MTN for Pressuring South Africa to Vote in Support of Iran's Nuclear Program, Calls for Sanctions Against MTN


New York, NY - United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) CEO, Ambassador Mark D. Wallace, issued the following statement Monday after South Africa's International Relations and Co-operation Minister confirmed that MTN successfully pressured the South African government into not voting to refer Iran's nuclear program to the UN Security Council:


MTN has blood on its hands from assisting the Iranian regime in brutalizing its own people. Now, it has been revealed that MTN engaged in corruption of the highest order, and a shameful affront to the principles of international law. The only conclusion one can reach from this news is that MTN is willing to assist Iran's illicit and dangerous nuclear weapons program to promote its business in Iran. MTN is a direct threat to global security and U.S. national security interests.


The Obama administration, the EU, and UN should sanction MTN immediately. Under no circumstances can a company that actively lobbies on behalf of Iran's nuclear program continue to access international markets and transact with legitimate companies and institutions.  


We are concerned about reports earlier this month stating that MTN had discussions with the U.S. government about repatriating its earnings out of Iran. The U.S. should not assist MTN in any way in repatriating its ill-gotten gains.  


MTN's partnership with the Iranian regime, which literally is a 51%-49% partnership, is one of the most reckless and dangerous corporate/sovereign relationships in the world.  


We call for a global boycott of MTN's products and services.  


MTN was a charter member of UANI's Iran Business Registry, launched in 2009, and a continuing focus of UANI's telecommunications campaign. MTN is the primary partner of the Iranian regime's mobile telecommunications systems, as a 49% shareholder in MTN Irancell, the rest of which is owned by the regime itself. MTN has carried out orders from the regime to shut off text messaging and Skype during times of political protest, and reportedly has a floor in its Tehran headquarters where Iranian military officials compile and access tracking data.


Click here to read UANI's February 29 letter to MTN.

Click here to read UANI's January 25 letter to MTN.

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Click here to send a message to MTN.