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Speaking just days after launching a massive aerial attack on Israel, Iran told the U.N. Security Council on Thursday that Israel “must be compelled to stop any further military adventurism against our interests.”

“In case of any use of force by the Israeli regime and violating our sovereignty, the Islamic Republic of Iran will not hesitate a bit to assert its inherent rights to give a decisive and proper response to it to make the regime regret its actions,” Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian said.

Israel has warned that it will retaliate against Iran’s April 13 missile and drone attack. The Iranian government said the attack was retaliation for a strike on the Iranian Embassy compound in Damascus earlier in April which it blamed on Israel.

Robert Wood, alternate representative of the United States for special political affairs in the U.N., said at the Security Council meeting, “It is vital that the international community is united in condemning Iran’s reckless escalatory acts, which pose a direct threat to international peace and security, destabilize the region and endanger its own people.”

Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian speaks to members of Security Council during a meeting to address the situation in the Middle East, at U.N. headquarters in New York City, New York, April 18, 2024.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian speaks to members of Security Council during a meeting to address the situation in the Middle East, at U.N. headquarters in New York City, New York, April 18, 2024.

Israel’s U.N. ambassador, Gilad Erdan, criticized Amirabdollahian’s presence at the Security Council, saying, “He is here to show you all — in your suits and with your diplomatic niceties — that his country can launch an attack on another member state on Saturday, and then he can come here on Thursday to lecture you all on human rights and international law.”

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the Middle East is at a “moment of maximum peril” and encouraged all sides to exercise caution.

“It is high time to end the bloody cycle of retaliation. It is high time to stop,” Guterres said. “The international community must work together to prevent any actions that could push the entire Middle East over the edge, with a devastating impact on civilians.”

The United States announced earlier Thursday that it is imposing new sanctions on Iran.

“We helped defeat this attack,” U.S. President Joe Biden said in a statement. “And today, we are holding Iran accountable — imposing new sanctions and export controls on Iran.”

The Treasury Department sanctions target 16 individuals and two entities that work to supply unmanned aerial vehicles, plus five companies that provide components for one of Iran’s largest steel producers.

U.S. President Joe Biden arrives to board Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland on April 18, 2024.

U.S. President Joe Biden arrives to board Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland on April 18, 2024.

These sanctions, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement, aim to “degrade and disrupt key aspects of Iran’s malign activity, including its UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) program and the revenue the regime generates to support its terrorism.”

The Department of Commerce also imposed new controls to restrict Iran’s access to technologies that include “basic commercial grade microelectronics.”

Nearly 50 countries issued a statement late Wednesday condemning Iran’s missile and drone attacks on Israel, calling on parties in the region to work to prevent the situation from escalating further, and pledging to cooperate diplomatically on efforts to resolve tensions in the Middle East.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen speaks at the World Bank headquarters in Washington, April 17, 2024.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen speaks at the World Bank headquarters in Washington, April 17, 2024.

“We note that Iran’s escalatory attack is the latest in a pattern of dangerous and destabilizing actions by Iran and its militant partners that pose a grave threat to international peace and security,” the statement said. The United States and United Kingdom were among the countries that issued the statement.

Israel will decide on its own how to respond to Iran’s weekend attack, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday, even as Western countries asked for restraint to avoid all-out Middle East warfare.

Netanyahu met with British Foreign Secretary David Cameron and his German counterpart, Annalena Baerbock. Both officials traveled to Israel as part of a Western attempt to keep the Israel-Iran confrontation from escalating further, on top of the Israeli war against Hamas militants in Gaza, which is now in its seventh month.

Netanyahu’s office said he thanked Cameron and Baerbock for their support, while telling them, “I want to make it clear — we will make our own decisions, and the State of Israel will do everything necessary to defend itself.”

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, speaking at an annual military parade on the outskirts of Tehran, warned against Israel retaliating, saying Iran would follow with a “massive and harsh response.”

Since Hamas fighters triggered the war in Gaza by attacking southern Israel on October 7, killing 1,200 people and leading to the capture of about 250 hostages, clashes have erupted between Israel and Iran-supported groups based in Lebanon, Syria, Yemen and Iraq.

Inside Gaza, Israel’s counteroffensive has killed nearly 34,000 people, two-thirds of them women and children, Gaza health officials say. Israel says the death toll includes thousands of Hamas fighters.

Senior U.S. officials have said the Iranian attack on Israel, the first launched from Iranian soil, involved more than 110 ballistic missiles, 30 cruise missiles and more than 150 one-way, explosive aerial drones. They said Iranian proxy forces in Iraq, Syria and Yemen also took part in the attack.

Iran has called Sunday’s aerial assault a one-off event carried out in retaliation for the attack on its consulate in Damascus.

The Israeli war Cabinet has met repeatedly in recent days to debate Israel’s response options.

Some information for this report came from The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse and Reuters.