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‘Today, the enemies are bringing up issue of missile-related sanctions and expecting us to back down’


Iran has stepped up its efforts in developing its ballistic missile capabilities despite pressure by the United States to stop it, a top Iranian commander said on Saturday.

“We doubled our activities and the American demands from Iran had an opposite result,” Commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp’s (IRGC) Aerospace Division Brigadier General Amirali Hajizadeh was quoted as telling Iran’s ISNA news outlet.

“Today, the enemies are bringing up the issue of missile-related sanctions and expecting us to back down. But, the IRGC’s reaction to this American demand will be aggressive,” he added.

Hajizadeh said that the United States was still Iran’s enemy, despite the recent implementation of the landmark deal struck in July between Iran and six world powers as well as the removal of many sanctions which were placed on the Islamic republic.

“Has the enemy abandoned its intentions for hostile moves? Does the (Islamic) Revolution have no problem anymore? That’s not the case. Our enemies, especially America, are still saying, ‘all options are on the table.’They are after certain goals in a number of fields, including the military and war, targeting the country’s security, culture and economy because they have a problem with the essence of the establishment and their problem is not nuclear,” he said.

On January 17th, the US announced new sanctions linked to Iran’s ballistic missile program, just a day after sanctions targeting its nuclear program were lifted, a move Iran denounced as “illegal.”

Adam J. Szubin, acting under secretary for terrorism


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