Rouhani: 'We have built, are building and will continue to build missiles'

DUBAI: Iran will continue to produce missiles for its defence and does not consider that a violation of international accords, President Hassan Rouhani said yesterday in a speech broadcast on state television.

Mr Rouhani spoke days after the US House of Representatives voted for new sanctions on Iran's ballistic missile programme, part of an effort to clamp down on Teheran without immediately moving to undermine an international nuclear agreement .

"We have built, are building and will continue to build missiles, and this violates no international agreements," Me Rouhani said in a speech in parliament.

"We will produce any weapons of any kind that we need and stockpile it and use it at anytime to defend ourselves," he said.

The United States has already imposed unilateral sanctions on Iran, saying its missile tests violate a United Nations resolution, which calls on Teheran not to undertake activities related to missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons.

Iran denies seeking nuclear weapons and says it has no plans to build nuclear-capable missiles.

Mr Rouhani also criticised the United States over President Donald Trump's refusal earlier this month to formally certify that Teheran is complying with the 2015 accord on Iran's nuclear programme, even though international inspectors say it is.

"You are disregarding past negotiations and agreements approved by the UN Security council and expect others to negotiate with you?" Mr Rouhani said. - REUTERS

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