Iran's elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard said on Thursday that the country's ballistic missile program would accelerate despite pressure from the United States and European Union to suspend it, the semi-official Tasnim news agency reported.
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"Iran's ballistic missile programme will expand and it will continue with more speed in reaction to (U.S. President Donald) Trump's hostile approach towards this revolutionary organisation (the Guards)," the Guard said in a statement published by Tasnim.
In a policy shift alst week, Trump said that he will decertify the Iran nuclear deal, and announced new sanctions on the Revolutionary Guard.
The Trump administration imposed new unilateral sanctions targeting Iran's missile activity, calling on Tehran not to develop missiles capable of delivering nuclear bombs. Iran says it has no such plans.
Tehran has repeatedly pledged to continue what it calls a defensive missile capability in defiance of Western criticism.
Trump's decertification announcement gives Congress 60 days to decide whether to reimpose economic sanctions on Tehran that were lifted under the pact. New sanctions would increase tension with Iran and put Washington at odds with other signatories of the accord such as Britain, France, Germany, Russia, China and the EU.
The leaders of France, Britain and Germany warned the U.S. against making decisions that could harm the Iran nuclear deal, such as re-imposing sanctions.
But they also said in a joint statement that they shared U.S. concerns over Iran's ballistic missile program and regional destabilizing activities and were ready to work with Washington to address those concerns.