WASHINGTON: The United States issued a pre-emptive warning to Iran on Thursday against pursuing three planned space rocket launches that it said would violate a UN Security Council resolution because they use ballistic missile technology.
Iran rejected the warning, issued by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, saying its space vehicle launches and missile tests were not violations.
Pompeo said Iran planned to launch in the coming months three rockets, called Space Launch Vehicles (SLV), that he said incorporate technology “virtually identical” to what is used in intercontinental ballistic missiles.
Tehran dismisses Washington’s concern
“The United States will not stand by and watch the Iranian regime’s destructive policies place international stability and security at risk,” Pompeo said in a statement.
“We advise the regime to reconsider these provocative launches and cease all activities related to ballistic missiles in order to avoid deeper economic and diplomatic isolation.”
Pompeo said the rocket launches would violate UN Security Council Resolution 2231, which endorsed a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers. It calls upon Iran not to undertake activities related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons.
Published in Dawn, January 4th, 2019