RNA - Lieutenant Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Brigadier General Hossein Salami said that if Western powers seek to limit Iran’s missile power, the country will have no option but to expand its potentials in the strategically important field.
Salami made the remarks late on Saturday that Iran’s strategy to maintain a cap on its missile power will change if the European Union and others seek to force the country into disarmament.
“If the Europeans and others want to pursue the missile disarmament of the Islamic Republic of Iran based on a plot, we will have no option but to resort to a strategic leap,” said Salami while speaking to the Iranian television.
The commander said Iran had no technical limits to expand the range, the destructive power and the propulsion system of its missiles, adding that it was Tehran’s policy to maintain a certain cap on the range of the missiles based on its own defensive strategy.
Salami said, however, that the cap could be removed if others decide to pressure Iran into dismantling its long-range missile arsenal.
“Our defense strategy can change commensurate with the conditions and changes in the behavior of role-players,” said the IRGC deputy commander.
The remarks come amid statements by certain EU governments about the need for Iran to avoid long-range missile tests in order for the country to enjoy the economic benefits of a nuclear agreement it signed in July 2015 with world powers.
In a related front, earlier on Saturday, Iran unveiled its newly-developed long-range cruise missile named Hoveizeh in a ceremony participated by Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami.
"The range of Hoveizeh missile is over 1,350km and it is good for targeting ground targets," Hatami said, addressing the ceremony.
He mentioned rapid reaction, low flight altitude, high precision in navigation and high destruction power as among the main features of the missile.
"Hoveizeh ground-to-ground cruise missile has been test-fired in a 1,200-km range and it managed to precisely hit the specified target," Hatami said, adding that the missile will increase the Iranian Armed Forces' capabilities and Iran's deterrence power.
The missile is due to be delivered to the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Aerospace Force.
According to Fars News Agency, Iranian officials have repeatedly stressed that the US pressures have failed to force Tehran compromise and curb its defense and missile capabilities.
"We have (earlier) said about the missile issue that we will not compromise at all about our country's defense issues and will not allow others to interfere in it," Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani said last month.
He, meantime, reminded that Iran's missile capability is "defensive and deterrent".
Shamkhani referred to the US President Donald Trump's economic pressures against Iran with the aim of forcing the country to accept Washington's irrational and hegemonic demands, and said, "We will not compromise our honor under Trump's bullying. This is the clear message of the Iranian government to the White House; sanctions will no way serve as an instrument to enforce renegotiations on issues already agreed upon."