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Iran to continue developing missile program: Legislator

2 January 2016 14:25


Iran’s Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani says the Islamic Republic is resolute to continue developing its indigenous missile program.

“In the field of missile technologies, Iran will definitely continue its path and will expand it, too, either through [provisions in the national] budget… or separate legislations,” Larijani told reporters in the southern port city of Bushehr on Saturday.

The remarks came in the wake of a report by The Wall Street Journalthat Washington is preparing sanctions against firms and individuals in Iran, Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates over alleged links to Iran’s missile program.

The planned new sanctions come as the US is obligated under a recent nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), to lift the sanctions on Iran over its nuclear program.

The lifting of the bans is expected to come in January.

In response to the US plans for new sanctions against Iran, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on December 31, 2015 issued an order calling on the country’s Defense Ministry to expedite efforts for boosting the country’s missile power.

Rouhani, in a decree to Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan, ordered an acceleration of Iran’s program for the production of “various types of missiles” needed to improve the country’s defense capabilities.

Earlier in the day, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hossein Jaberi Ansari warned the US against imposing any fresh sanctions on Iran over the country’s missile program, saying Tehran will respond to such acts of meddling.

“The Islamic Republic will respond to any act of meddling against its defense program by strengthening its defense might,” Jaberi Ansari said, adding, “No measure can deny the Islamic Republic of Iran its legitimate and legal rights to boost its defense might and national security.”

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