Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Tehran Reiterates Rejection of Negotiations Over its Ballistic Missile Program

Tehran Reiterates Rejection of Negotiations Over its Ballistic Missile Program

Wednesday, 24 January, 2018 - 10:15
Photo published by Tasnim Agency on the Iranian military drills in southeast of Iran (Tasnim News)

Senior Iranian officials have reiterated Tehran’s refusal to return to the table of nuclear negotiations and halt its ballistic missile program.

Secretary General of the Iranian Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani, said the latest US steps that defied the nuclear deal were “illegal”, stressing that the JCPOA was “indivisible under any circumstances.”

He emphasized that Iran’s missile program and defense capabilities would by no means be subject to negotiations, as reported by Tasnim News Agency.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian accused Iran on Monday of not respecting part of UN Resolution 2231, which calls on Tehran to refrain from work on ballistic missiles designed to carry nuclear warheads.

The Iranian nuclear file was one of the main axes of Le Drian’s meeting with his US counterpart Rex Tillerson in Paris.

He noted that Paris was firmly committed to the principle of the nuclear agreement provided that Iran respected it.

On Tuesday, Iran announced that its army forces have “successfully fired a ‘Nasr’ cruise missile from an onshore mobile launcher to destroy a naval target,” Tasnim News reported.

“The Navy is also going to use long-range cruise missiles in the drill,” it added.

Iranian government Spokesman Mohammad Nobakht said at his weekly conference on Tuesday that Tehran “will not negotiate with any party over its missile capabilities,” as reported by the government’s Mehr agency.

“No one has the right to interfere in this regard with Iran’s affairs,” he was quoted as saying.

“We will not negotiate with anyone in this regard because the defense structure is the right of the Iranian people,” he added.

Iranian reports had pointed out that Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif announced during his meeting in Brussels with the foreign ministers of Germany, France and Britain Tehran’s readiness to negotiate the missile program along with the nuclear file. However, the Iranian Foreign Ministry’s spokesman Bahram Qassemi denied these reports during a press conference last week.

Editor Picks