Iran’s nuclear programme: Iran denounces US

Iran denounces US over reports of ‘arbitrary and illegal’ new sanctions Firms and individuals in Iran, Hong Kong and United Arab Emirates reportedly targeted following launch of missile in October

Iran's nuclear programme

Iran has reacted angrily to the prospect of fresh sanctions by the US against its ballistic missile programme, denouncing them as arbitrary and illegal.

According to the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday, the US is preparing new sanctions against firms and individuals in Iran, Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates.

The move follows a controversial test by Iran in October of its medium-range Emad rocket. A report by UN sanctions monitors said the missile was capable of carrying a nuclear warhead. Iran insists the rocket is conventional, and purely for defence. If they are imposed, the reported sanctions would be the first by Washington against Iran since Tehran signed a nuclear deal with world powers in July that will eventually involve Washington dropping separate, wider-ranging sanctions targeting that programme.

On Thursday, Iran’s foreign ministry denounced the Obama administration. “As we have declared to the American government … Iran’s missile programme has no connection to the [nuclear] agreement,” state television quoted spokesman Hossein Jaber Ansari as saying. Ansari added: “Iran will resolutely respond to any interfering action by America against its defensive programmes.” The Wall Street Journal reported that the US treasury department was preparing sanctions on two Iran-linked networks helping develop the missile programme.

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