Iranian ballistic missile test
Iranian ballistic missile test Reuters

Iran said in a letter to the United Nations on Thursday that it is determined to go ahead with its disputed ballistic missile program.

“Iran is determined to resolutely continue its activities related to ballistic missiles and space launch vehicles,” Iran’s UN envoy Majid Takhte Ravanchi wrote in the letter.

A copy of the letter was tweeted by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.

Iran’s letter was sent after France, Germany and the United Kingdom told UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday that Iran has developed nuclear-capable ballistic missiles in violation of a UN Security Council call on Tehran not to undertake any activity related to such missiles.

Ambassadors from the three European nations urged Guterres to inform the council in his next report that Iran’s ballistic missile activity is “inconsistent” with the call in a council resolution endorsing the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran.

Earlier on Thursday, Zarif blasted the three European nations’ letter, saying in a tweet it “is a desperate falsehood to cover up their miserable incompetence in fulfilling bare minimum of their own JCPOA obligations.”

JCPOA refers to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, which is the official name for the 2015 nuclear deal signed between Iran and world powers.

“If E3 want a modicum of global credibility, they can begin by exerting sovereignty rather than bowing to US bullying,” added Zarif.

Iran has continuously test fired ballistic missiles in recent years, much to the dismay of the US, which says that Iran’s ballistic missile tests are a violation of UN Security Council resolution 2231, which enshrined the 2015 nuclear deal.

The resolution says Iran is “called upon” to refrain for up to eight years from work on ballistic missiles designed to deliver nuclear weapons.

Iran, however, denies its ballistic missile tests violate this resolution. President Hassan Rouhani has stressed in the past that Iran will continue to produce missiles for its defense and does not consider that a violation of international agreements.