Top Iranian Commanders Slam US, Vow to Maintain Country’s Defense Power
Major General Mohammad Baqeri (R), Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari (C), Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani (L)
Alwaght-Top military commanders in Iran have vowed to maintain the country's missile defense systems while lambasting the US for its continued pressure on Tehran over its military strength.
Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Baqeri said on Tuesday that the country’s development of its missile systems are based on domestic resources and sanctions by the hegemonic system would never affect it.
Speaking to reporters, Baqeri added that Iran’s missiles have a high accuracy and in many cases are capable of hitting their targets with pinpoint precision.
“We have repeatedly emphasized that the missiles of the Islamic Republic of Iran have been designed and manufactured only for defensive purposes and we have no intention to attack any country,” the senior commander said.
New US policy threatens Iran
In earlier remarks on Monday, Baqeri said the new policy announced by the US President Trump's administration is a "serious threat" aimed at toppling the Islamic Republic.
"After months, the Americans have come up with a strategy that can put our country or the independent countries in trouble," he told a national conference on civilian defense in Tehran Monday.
Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces
Major General Mohammad Baqeri
Baqeri dismissed any negotiations with the US, saying Iran will "definitely" leave the nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) if new US measures provide for sanctions to “snap back” into place.
Iran missile can target US forces across the region
Meanwhile, the commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) said there is currently no need for Iran to extend the range of its missiles, which is enough to strike the American forces deployed to the region in case of any US aggression against the country.
Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Major
General Mohammad Ali Jafari
During a Tuesday conference titled ‘A World Without Terror’ in Tehran, Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari said Iranian missiles have currently a range of up to 2,000 kilometers based on the limits set by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei.
“There is the capability to increase this range, but it is sufficient for now as the Americans are present within a 2,000-kilometer radius around the country, and would get a response in the case of any invasion,” he said.
US would lose war with Iran
The senior general, however, said “the Americans fear the consequences of a war with Iran, and are well aware that they would be the losers if such a war breaks out.”
Jafari further pointed to US attempts to undermine Iran’s national missile program through sanctions and economic pressure on the country, stressing, however, that such hostile measures cannot break the Iranian nation’s resistance.
Elsewhere, Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani said on Tuesday that the country’s defense issues, including its missile program, are not negotiable at all.
Iran will not renegotiate nuclear deal
Shamkhani said on Tuesday that the Islamic Republic would never renegotiate any of the provisions of the landmark nuclear deal, JCPOA, reached between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries more than two years ago.
“On defensive issue, we will not renegotiate under any circumstances,” he added.
Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has proved in practice that it is abiding by the agreement and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has also confirmed it eight times,” the SNSC secretary pointed out.
He emphasized that Iran would continue with strength to meet its needs in the defense sector through its domestic capabilities.
Shamkhani pointed to the US extension of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) and said such restrictions would never have any influence on the Iranian nation’s fundamental measures to defend its national identity and integrity.
The US House of Representatives, in Congress, on Thursday voted overwhelmingly to impose new sanctions against Iran's ballistic missile program. The "Iran Ballistic Missiles and International Sanctions Enforcement Act" was passed in the lower chamber of Congress with 423 votes in favor and two against.
To become law, the bill would have to pass the US Senate and be signed into law by President Trump.