With Back Against The Wall, Iran Warns Europe It Could Make ‘Strategic Leap’ In Missile Program

The deputy chief of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps warned European nations that pressuring the Islamic Republic to curb its ballistic missile program would have the opposite effect by leading to their enhanced development. “If the Europeans, or anyone else, want to conspire to disarm Iran of missiles, we will be forced to make a strategic leap,” Brig. Gen. Hossein Salami affirmed over the weekend. It comes after Tehran announced the “successful test” of a new cruise missile with a range of over 1,350 kilometers (about 850 miles), which would put the entire Middle East in range. Iran’s missile program is a major point of contention and cited as one of the reasons for United States President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear accord. European powers have thus far managed to salvage the deal but there are indications that London, Paris and Germany, in particular, are becoming wary of Tehran’s ambitions to develop the means by which to deliver atomic weapons. Negotiations between the sides are ongoing and it is believed that these governments are trying to get the mullahs to roll back their efforts in exchange for the introduction of a so-called “Special Purpose Vehicle” that would allow for continued non-dollar trade with the Islamic Republic with a view to circumventing American sanctions. While the mechanism was meant to be completed in December, European officials have since suggested that it will be months before it is operational.

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