Iran vows to continue 'full power' with missile programme in defiance of new US sanctions

Iran vows to continue 'full power' with missile programme in defiance of new US sanctions
Iran has slammed new sanctions imposed by the US, claiming its "hostile" actions seek to weaken the historic nuclear deal, and vowed to carry on with its missile programme regardless.
2 min read
29 July, 2017
Tehran called the new US sanctions "hostile and reprehensible" [AFP]

Iran on Saturday condemned new sanctions passed by the US Congress against its missile programme, which President Donald Trump is set to sign into law, and vowed to continue it.

"We will continue with full power our missile programme," foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi told state broadcaster IRIB.

"We consider the action by the US as hostile, reprehensible and unacceptable, and it's ultimately an effort to weaken the nuclear deal," Ghasemi added, referring to a 2015 agreement with the United States and other world powers that lifted some sanctions on Tehran.

"The military and missile fields... are our domestic policies and others have no right to intervene or comment on them.

"We reserve the right to reciprocate and make an adequate response to the US actions," he said.

The sanctions bill, which also targets Russia and North Korea, was passed by the US Senate on Thursday, two days after being approved by the House of Representatives.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on Friday that President Donald Trump will sign the bill into law.

Separately on Friday, Washington imposed new sanctions targeting Iran's missile programme a day after Tehran tested a satellite-launch rocket.

The US Treasury singled out six companies owned or controlled by Shahid Hemmat Industrial Group, which it said was central to the programme, freezing their US assets and barring US citizens from dealing with them.

Western states suspect Iran of developing the technology capable of launching long-range ballistic missiles with conventional or nuclear payloads, a charge denied by Tehran, which insists its space programme has purely peaceful aims.

Tensions have mounted between Washington and Tehran since US President Donald Trump took office six months ago.