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EYE ON ISRAEL: Iran’s Supreme Leader declares that ‘missiles’ rather than talks are part of the future

Iran’s Supreme Leader declared on Wednesday that “missiles” would be part of Tehran’s future relations with the outside world and implicitly accused a former president of “treachery”.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who occupies the apex of Iran’s power structure, issued a statement that widened a rift at the heart of the regime.

Since the signing of the nuclear agreement and the lifting of a range of sanctions in January, President Hassan Rouhani and his ministers have stressed the need to ease tensions and open up the economy to Western investment.

Ayatollah Khamenei, by contrast, has declared a “resistance economy” to be the overriding priority for this year. The Revolutionary Guard Corps have conducted three missile tests since the nuclear agreement was signed last July.

Last week, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, a former president who has become a close ally of Mr Rouhani, said the “future is in dialogue, not missiles”.

But Ayatollah Khamenei delivered a stinging rebuke to the man who was president for eight years. “People say that tomorrow’s world is a world of negotiations and not a world of missiles,” said Ayatollah Khamenei. “If they say this thoughtlessly, it shows that they are thoughtless. However, if this is intentional, then


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