US not in position to comment on Iran's missile might: Cmdr.
Iran Press TV
Sat Apr 9, 2016 2:45PM
A senior Iranian commander has rejected US Secretary of State John Kerry's call for missile negotiations with Tehran, saying Washington is not in a position to make comments about the Islamic Republic's missile capabilities.
It is outside the purview of US officials to talk about Iran's defense requirements, Brigadier General Hossein Salami, second-in-command of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), told reporters on Saturday.
"Our missile capabilities will never be up for negotiations or compromise," Salami said.
He added that Iran's missile industry supports the nation's dignity, survival and glory, emphasizing that the Islamic Republic will proceed with boosting its missile might.
Salami's reaction came after the US secretary of state suggested on Thursday that Washington was open to a "new arrangement" with Tehran for peacefully resolving disputes such as its recent ballistic missile tests.
Kerry said the US and its partners were telling Iran that they were "prepared to work on a new arrangement to find a peaceful solution to these issues."
The IRGC successfully test-fired two ballistic missiles on March 9 as part of military drills to assess its capabilities. The missiles dubbed Qadr-H and Qadr-F were fired during large-scale drills, code-named Eqtedar-e-Velayat.
On March 8, Iran fired another ballistic missile called Qiam from silo-based launchers in different locations across the country.
The US claims that Iran's missile tests violate the UN Security Council Resolution 2231 that endorsed a nuclear agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which was reached between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries – the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany – on July 14, 2015.
Iran, however, has repeatedly announced that the missile launches were not against the Security Council resolution.
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei on March 30 said Iran must strengthen its defense capabilities in the face of enemy threats.
"If the Islamic establishment seeks technology and negotiations but does not have defensive power, it will have to back down in the face of any petty country that threatens [it]," the Leader said.
Ayatollah Khamenei emphasized, however, that Iran's negotiating skills must also be boosted.
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