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Iran Dismisses French Warning About Its Missile Program

A display featuring missiles and a portrait of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is seen at Baharestan Square in Tehran, Iran September 27, 2017. File photo

Iran has dismissed a warning from the French foreign minister that if talks on Iran’s missile program fail, new sanctions might be imposed.

Bahram Ghasemi, spokesperson of Iran’s foreign ministry told reporters on Friday that his country’s missile program has “defensive” purposes and is a “security guarantee” for Iran. He added that the program will be “strengthened” even further.

Earlier in day Jean-Yves Le Drian had told reporters, "We are ready, if the talks don't yield results, to apply sanctions firmly, and they know it".

In response, Ghasemi announced that Iran’s missile capabilities are not subject to negotiations and during discussions Tehran has informed Paris about this. He added that Le Drian’s remarks contradict “the spirit” of cooperation between the two countries.

Ghasemi also warned that Iran will respond to any new sanctions by European countries by reconsidering its relations with the block.

Despite Western and specifically U.S. and French warnings Iran has continued ballistic missile tests in recent weeks. Washington insists that Iran must abide by UN resolution 2231, which calls on Iran to abstain from any missile activity that could be used in delivering nuclear warheads.