TEHRAN, IRAN — Recently re-elected Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has made it clear that he is no fan of U.S. president Donald Trump and took aim this week at Congress’s announcement of new sanctions.
Just days after Trump criticized the Islamic Republic for its ballistic missile program and support of terrorism in the Middle East, Rouhani countered that Iran would will never halt its clandestine missile program and said his nation will use military force if necessary to stop the United States and it’s allies.
“We need missiles and the enemy should know that we make everything we need and we don’t pay an iota of attention to your words,” Rouhani said on Wednesday during a meeting with Iranian cabinet members. “The remarks by the enemies of the Iranian nation against Iran’s missile power are out of ignorance.”
Rouhini’s remarks came as the rogue nation announced the construction of a third underground ballistic missile production factory, helmed by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, or IRGC.
Iranian General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, said the factory is necessary to to boosts Tehran’s “missile power” and intimidate the United States and the “Zionist regime,” of Israel.
“We will increase our missile power. Our enemies, the United States, and the Zionist regime (Israel) are naturally upset and get angry at our missile production, tests and underground missile facilities because they want Iran to be in a weak position,” vowed Hajizadeh on Thursday.
Iran’s repititious firing of ballistic missiles and launching of space missiles—which are believed to be cover for an intercontinental ballistic missile program—have angered both Democrats and Republican leaders on Capitol Hill.
In a bi-partisan decision, Congress announced on Thursday it’s plan to increase economic sanctions on Iran as a direct result of its missile program and support of Islamic terrorism and illegal weapons trade.
Sen. Robert Menendez (D., N.J.), a chief sponsor of the legislation, said the sanctions are necessary to ensure that “Iran’s leaders understand they do not enjoy blanket impunity as the United States” and that Iran “continues to live up to its commitments under the nuclear agreement”.
“Independent of the nuclear portfolio, and as President Rouhani starts his second presidential term, our broader policy towards Iran must be one that holds Tehran accountable for their destabilizing efforts in the region, illegal and dangerous missile technology development, and nefarious activities as the world’s leading sponsor of terrorism,” Menendez said. “As the administration continues to review its Iran policy, Congress must set out clear markers that impose real consequences to Iran’s illicit behavior that runs counter to our national security and that of our allies in the region.”
The new legislation will impose mandatory sanctions on all individuals associated with Iran’s ballistic missile program, and any nation who carries out transactions with them.
In a controversial deal worked out with the Obama administration in 2015, Iran agreed to redesign, convert, and reduce its nuclear facilities and accept the Additional Protocol (with provisional application) in exchange for the lifting of all nuclear-related economical sanctions, freeing up tens of billions of dollars in oil revenue and frozen assets.
President Trump, calling the Iran nuclear deal “the worst deal ever made” vowed to overturn the agreement.