Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani says domestically-manufactured rockets will carry two new satellites into orbit “in the coming weeks.”
Rouhani made the remarks during a ceremony held to commemorate the second passing anniversary of former president and chairman of the Expediency Council Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani in Tehran on Thursday.
Rouhani said, “Missiles are our defensive tool and we are proud of it,” adding, “In the coming weeks, we will send two new satellites into space using our domestically-built rockets.”
He also described Iran’s defense power and technology achievements as relics of Ayatollah Hashemi.
Last November, Deputy Defense Minister General Qassem Taqizadeh announced that Iran would launch three satellites into space “on various orbits” within a few months.
Earlier this month, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claimed that Iran’s planned launch of space rockets and missiles breaches Security Council Resolution 2231 that endorsed the 2015 nuclear deal.
Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif dismissed Pompeo’s claim, saying Washington has already violated that resolution and thus cannot “lecture” Tehran on it.
Foreign Minister Zarif says the US, which is itself in ‘material breach’ of Security Council Resolution 2231, is in no position to lecture Iran on its obligations under that document.
The top Iranian diplomat was referring to Washington’s unilateral withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in defiance of international objections.
Since its JCPOA exit, the administration of US President Donald Trump has unleashed its “toughest ever” sanctions against Iran. It has also warned of severe penalties for companies that evade the bans and engage in business dealings with the Islamic Republic.
Iranian Minister of Information and Communications Technology Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi said recently that new Iranian satellites had successfully passed pre-launch tests.
“A satellite with the resolution of 1,000 meters was due to be manufactured through international cooperation 10 years ago, but they (international partners) didn’t cooperate with Iran,” he tweeted.
“The program was changed and the production of a domestically-made satellite with a 25 times higher resolution was prolonged, but it was made to serve in agricultural, environmental and water management fields,” he added.