International

Iran conducts new missile tests defying US sanctions

TEHRAN: Iran said Tuesday it had conducted multiple ballistic missile tests to demonstrate “deterrent power,” a move that comes in defiance of US sanctions imposed over its missile programme in January.

The announcement by the official IRNA news agency said the tests showed the country’s “all-out readiness to confront threats” against its territorial integrity.

It described them as a military drill in which “ballistic missiles were fired from silos” in different parts of the country.

The United States imposed new sanctions over Iran’s missile programme in January almost immediately after separate sanctions related to Iran’s nuclear programme had been lifted under a landmark deal with world powers.

The latest tests, called “The Power of Velayat”, a reference to the religious doctrine of the Islamic republic’s leadership, were undertaken by the Revolutionary Guards and Aerospace Forces, IRNA reported.

Sepah News, the Guards’ official media service, carried a statement confirming the missile tests, which come less than two weeks after elections in Iran delivered gains to politicians aligned with Hassan Rouhani, the country’s moderate president.

The Revolutionary Guards report to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, not Rouhani, and their influence dwarfs that of the army and other armed forces.

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