Iran threatens to increase its missile range - despite U.S. pushback

06 December, 2018, 11:30 | Author: Myra Gill
  • Iran becomes world missile power despite sanctions: Defence Minister

The missile programme gives Iran "veto rights" over strategic issues in the Middle East, Heshmatullah Falahatpisheh, chairman of the National Security and Foreign Policy Commission of the Iranian parliament, told IRNA on Tuesday.

The UN Security Council will meet behind closed doors on Tuesday (4 December) at the request of France and Britain after they accused Iran of test-firing a medium-range missile at the weekend, diplomats said.

He has reimposed sanctions on Tehran and criticized the deal for not including curbs on Iran's development of ballistic missiles or its support for proxies in Syria, Yemen, Lebanon and Iraq.

Britain on Tuesday accused Iran of disregarding a United Nations resolution after the Security Council debated whether a purported ballistic missile test three days ago could even amount to a breach of Tehran's nuclear deal with world powers.

The potential breach concerns United Nations resolution 2231, a provision agreed at the same time but not itself part of the nuclear deal, relating to Iran's missile programme.

Tehran has neither denied nor confirmed the missile launch.

Iran did not take part in the Security Council consultations.

Mr Trump's administration reinstituted sanctions on Iran although the other countries in the nuclear deal - struck during Barack Obama's second term in the White House - are sticking to it despite renewed United States pressure on them to abandon the accord or face trade restrictions.

Britain, France and Germany in March proposed fresh European Union sanctions on Iran over its ballistic missiles, according to a confidential document seen by Reuters, but were rebuffed by other European Union nations including Italy, which are seeking to develop business ties with the Islamic Republic.

Iran becomes world missile power despite sanctions: Defence Minister
UN Security Council to meet over Iran ballistic missile test

"We would like to see the European Union move sanctions that target Iran's missile program", Hook told reporters aboard Pompeo's plane as he traveled to Brussels for a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting.

Nasirzadeh did not give details on how far Iran would like to increase that range, according to the Fars report.

On Saturday, Pompeo said Iran had tested a medium-range ballistic missile in violation of a United Nations resolution, while Iran said its missile program was purely defensive in nature and exclusively for the defense of the country.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Saturday condemned what he called Iran's testing of a medium-range ballistic missile in violation of the 2015 global agreement on the Iranian nuclear program, from which Washington has withdrawn.

"This is a grave and escalating threat and we need to restore deterrents against Iran's missile programme".

Some supporters of the JCPOA have expressed concern that further pressures on the Iranian regime could prompt it to follow the U.S. in withdrawing from the deal, which imposes limited restrictions on Iran's nuclear activity in exchange for sanctions relief.

After the council meeting, French Ambassador Francois Delattre said there was "widely-shared concern" at the council about Iran's missile test and renewed France's call to Iran to halt all activities related to its missile program.

"The goal of America and its regional allies is, through exerting pressure and economic shortages, to say we have hit a dead end on the threshold of the 40th anniversary of the Islamic revolution", said Zanganeh, as reported by Reuters, citing the oil ministry news agency SHANA. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall.


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