European Union should sanction Iran over missile tests, USA says

06 December, 2018, 02:14 | Author: Wade Massey
  • European Union should sanction Iran over missile tests, USA says

Iran's military has cited 2,000 km as the current missile range, and said us bases in Afghanistan, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar, plus USA aircraft carriers in the Gulf, were within range.

"If the Security Council is serious about holding Iran accountable and enforcing our resolutions, then at a minimum we should be able to deliver a unanimous condemnation of this provocative missile test", she said.

Tehran insists its missile program is purely defensive but has threatened to disrupt oil shipments through the Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf if Washington tries to strangle its exports.

"Iran has launched missiles that are capable of carrying multiple warheads, including a nuclear weapon", Hook confirmed to the Washington Free Beacon while talking to reporters aboard Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's airplane en route to Brussels for North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meetings.

When asked about results of UN Security Council consultations, held behind closed doors on Tuesday, the official spokesman for the Russian Permanent Mission to the United Nations, Fyodor Strzhizhovsky, said "the Russian Federation has no information that on December 1 Iran tested a ballistic missile, created to carry nuclear weapons".

In keeping with pre-established talking points, the USA used the meeting to describe the latest launch - one of approximately a dozen since the nuclear deal went into effect - as an outright violation of the Security Council resolution. Military and strategic experts from the region stressed the need to bolster the GCC's capabilities to meet the growing threats of Iran's proliferation of ballistic missiles and drones, as well as WMDs carried by those devices.

"Iran is among the world's top powers in building missiles, radars, armoured vehicles and unmanned aerial vehicles", Hatami told official IRNA news agency, reports Xinhua.

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The spokesman said Russian Federation had urged the West to engage in dialogue with Iran instead of introducing new sanctions.

Russia, he said, is violating key arms control treaties and undermining the sovereignty of its neighbors, while Iran is flouting U.N. Security Council resolutions.

Iran used its ballistic missiles to attack the headquarters of Iranian-Kurdish parties in Koya, Kurdistan Region in September. "This is outside the framework of (nuclear) negotiations and part of our national security, for which we will not ask any country's permission", Mr. Shekarchi said.

Hook said Tehran was making transfers of Iranian missiles and missile technology to Syria and allies of Tehran, such as Houthi forces in Yemen and Lebanon's Iranian-backed Shi'ite Hezbollah, a position that European powers privately agree on. The White House has since being putting leverage on other nations to stop doing business in Iran, threatening companies defying it with secondary sanctions.

The nuclear deal provides for a lifting of sanctions against Iran in return for curbs on its nuclear activities.

"We would like to see the European Union move sanctions that target Iran's missile program", Hook told reporters.

However, diplomacy with Iran is highly sensitive for the European Union because Brussels considers the 2015 pact to stop Tehran from developing a nuclear weapon as the bloc's biggest foreign policy achievement in decades and does not want it to collapse. Officials have previously boasted of increasing their missile range and have specifically highlighted their supposed ability to strike U.S. bases in Afghanistan, the United Arab Emirates, and elsewhere.

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