Iran to respond to US sanctions with more missile power

Tehran, March 27 (IANS) Iran will respond to sanctions imposed on the country by the US for its ballistic missile programme by “further boosting” its missile power, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said.

“We will respond to recent US measures against Iran’s missile programme by further boosting our missile power,” the minister said, adding that there are no limits to Tehran’s missile programme “because this programme has nothing to do with nuclear weapons”.

On Thursday, the US announced economic sanctions against two Iranian companies for supporting Iran’s ballistic missile programme, EFE news reported.

These sanctions were imposed after Iran test-fired several long-range ballistic missiles earlier this month, which the US said could violate UN resolutions on Iran.

These resolutions forbid Iran from developing missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads, including ballistic missiles.

However, Tehran claims its weapons are not designed to carry warheads and only seek to boost the country’s deterrent and defencive power.

These new sanctions, as well as the debate on the Iranian missile programme, are beyond the scope of the agreement signed between the Asian country and Group 5+1 (the US, France, Russia, China, Britain and Germany) that saw international sanctions on the nation lifted in January.

Zarif said the US is legally bound to respect the Comprehensive Plan of Joint Action, reached between Iran and the six world powers in July 2015, and that it should comply with its obligations in practice, irrespective of who is in power.

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