Iran will “never” hold any talks over its missile program, said the commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Hossein Salami on Thursday, adding that the country will “never” stop improving its defense capabilities, the semi-official Mehr news agency reported.
Asked about the likelihood of talks between world powers and Iran regarding Iran’s missile program in order to ease sanctions against the country, Salami said: “Such a thing will never happen. We will never stop or retreat when it comes to increasing our defense capabilities. This topic is one of our red lines.”
Iran’s defense capabilities “cannot be discussed, adjusted, stopped or controlled,” he added.
“We are progressing uncontrollably,” Mehr quoted Salami as saying, without specifying what field or fields the progress is being made in.
“We assure the Iranian nation that the country’s armed forces and the IRGC have the potential and the capacity to confront any enemy, no matter how great,” said Salami.
“The [Iranian] nation should rest assured and live with peace of mind because we are capable of destroying any enemy,” he added.
The US withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal in 2018, arguing it was flawed to Iran’s advantage, and has since re-imposed sanctions against the country. Washington says it wants to negotiate a more sweeping deal aimed at further curbing Iran’s nuclear work, halting its ballistic missile program and limiting its meddling in the affairs of other countries in the Middle East.
Top Iranian officials and military commanders have on several occasions ruled out the possibility of any talks on the country’s missile program.
The IRGC navy commander Alireza Tangsiri said in September that Iran’s missile program is developing daily and is a “red line” for negotiations.
In June, the country’s highest authority Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei stressed that Iran will not give up its missile program and insisted that “America will not be able to deprive Iran of its missile capabilities.”
Source » alarabiya