August 23, 2019 / 2:53 PM / 4 months ago

Iran has highly accurate missiles which it has not publicized: deputy defense minister

FILE PHOTO: The domestically built mobile missile defence system Bavar-373 is displayed on the National Defence Industry Day in Tehran, Iran August 22, 2019. Tasnim News Agency/Handout via REUTERS

GENEVA (Reuters) - Iran has produced highly accurate missiles which it has not publicized, Iranian Deputy Defence Minister General Qassem Taqizadeh said on Friday, according to the semi-official Fars news agency.

Taqizadeh did not provide details about the weapons.

U.S. President Donald Trump pulled out of an international agreement on Iran’s nuclear program last year and stepped up sanctions on Tehran in order to curb Iran’s development of ballistic missiles and its support for proxies in Syria, Yemen, Lebanon and Iraq.

“Today we have very accurate missiles which we have not publicized,” Taqizadeh said, according to Fars.

Iran displayed what it described as a domestically built long-range, surface-to-air missile air defense system on Thursday, amid rising tensions with the United States.

Iran shot down a U.S. military surveillance drone in the Gulf with a surface-to-air missile in June, nearly setting off a conflict with America. The Islamic Republic says the drone was over its territory, but the United States says it was in international airspace.

“The Americans know well that we don’t have to go to New York and confront them,” Taqizadeh said. “Today there are tens of thousands of Americans in the region and because of this the Supreme Leader said that they will not get into a war with us.”

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is the highest authority in Iran. 

Reporting By Babak Dehghanpisheh, Editing by William Maclean

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