A few hours after Iran unveiled a long-range missile, United States Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said its ballistic missile program is designed for offensive purposes.
“They (Iranians) are advancing a ballistic missile program that is designed for offensive purposes to inflict harm and damage potentially lethal so on other states, other peoples, and our allies and partners,” he told a press briefing on Wednesday.
Kirby deemed their “malign activities” as much more than messages to the US and Israel at the heels of the new round of negotiations in Vienna.
“They are destabilizing in the region. They’re supporting terrorist groups across the region. They are harassing maritime shipping,” he stressed.
Iran unveiled a new domestically-made missile with a range of 1,450 kilometers on Wednesday, state TV reported, a day after Tehran and Washington resumed indirect talks to salvage a 2015 nuclear deal.
The missile has high accuracy, is manufactured completely domestically, and can defeat missile shield systems, according to the Revolutionary Guards’ Missile Unit.
Kirby told reporters the US has continually watched as Iran has improved their ballistic missile program, adding that it is keenly aware of the regional threats that ballistic missile program poses.
“Which is why we are working so hard with allies and partners in the region to be able to counter those kinds of threats and to make sure that we are contributing to their self-defense needs as well,” he added.
Iran’s development and proliferation of ballistic missiles poses a threat to the international security and remains a significant nonproliferation challenge, said Deputy Spokesperson of the Department of State Jalina Porter.
“We continue to use a variety of nonproliferation tools to prevent and – further advancement of Iran’s missile program and its ability to proliferate technology to others,” she told a press briefing.
Source » trackpersia