Iran parliament seeks to boost missile funding

US president Donald Trump has been increasing pressure on Iran over compliance with the UN-endorsed deal to lift nuclear sanctions on Tehran. Nicholas Kamm  AFP
Iran Allocates $520Mln for Missile Program in Response to New US Sanctions - AFP
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14 August, 2017

As some lawmakers chanted "Death to America", Iran's parliament on August 13 granted its initial approval for increased funding of Teheran's missile program and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Quds Force. During Sunday's voting session, 240 out of 244 legislators approved the missile spending bill.

It proposes that the government allocates an additional $260m for the "development of the missile programme" and the same amount to Iran's Quds Force, a branch of the country's Revolutionary Guards Corps, the official state news agency Irna said.

"The Americans should know that this was our first action", said parliament speaker Ali Larijani, after announcing overwhelming support for a package "to confront terrorist and adventurist actions by the United States in the region". The Quds Force leads Iran's military role in Syria and Iraq.

Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi, who is the head of an Iranian commission tasked with monitoring the agreement's implementation, told MPs that the government backed the bill which he described as "very strong".

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Iran denies its missile programme violates a United Nations resolution that endorsed Tehran's 2015 nuclear deal with world powers and calls upon the Islamic Republic not to conduct activities related to ballistic missiles created to deliver nuclear weapons.

The plan would require Iran's government and armed forces to draw up a strategy to counter U.S. violations of human rights around the world, and to support Iranian bodies and individuals affected by U.S. sanctions.

He went on to say that according to the law, the Iranian administration is obliged to monitor the U.S. government's anti-Iran measures and counteract them accordingly. US President Trump has warned North Korea, an ally of Iran, against firing the missiles and says he will protect Guam, home to 163,000 US citizens if that happens.


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