A number of Republican senators have called on US President Barack Obama not to lift sanctions against Iran.
In a letter released on Thursday, 35 senators wrote, “It is a mistake to treat Iran’s ballistic missile program as separate from Iran’s nuclear program.”
“We urge your administration to not lift sanctions on Iran that would provide billions of dollars in economic relief,” they wrote.
A panel of UN experts suggested on Tuesday in a confidential report that Iran’s testing of a ballistic missile in October violates a UN Security Council resolution, alleging that the missile is capable of delivering nuclear weapons.
However, Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan on Wednesday called the Emad missile a conventional weapon.
Despite Iran’s clarification, the Republican senators accused the Islamic Republic of “developing ICBM capabilities for the sole purpose of enabling delivery of a nuclear weapon to the United States.”
“We are concerned that your administration is failing to respond to Iran’s dangerous and destabilizing actions out of an eagerness to see the Iran deal go forward,” the GOP lawmakers wrote.
Iran and the P5+1 group of countries – the US, Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany – announced the conclusion of nuclear negotiations in Vienna, Austria, on July 14.
Under the agreement, Iran has been recognized by the United Nations as a nuclear power, and it will continue its uranium enrichment program, but some restrictions will be placed on Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for the removal of sanctions.
Most Republicans and some pro-Israeli Democrats oppose the agreement because they say it gives too many concessions to Iran and threatens the security of the Zionist regime, a major US ally in the Middle East.
The Republican letter was sponsored by Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.). It was signed by Republican Senators Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), John Barrasso (Wyo.), Roy Blunt (Mo.), John Boozman (Ark.), Mike Crapo (Idaho), John Cornyn (Texas), Tom Cotton (Ark.), Ted Cruz (Texas), Mike Enzi (Wyo.), Joni Ernst (Iowa), Deb Fischer (Neb.), Cory Gardner (Colo.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), Chuck Grassley (Iowa), Orrin Hatch (Utah), Dean Heller (Nev.), James Inhofe (Okla.), Johnny Isakson (Ga.), Mark Kirk (Ill.), Mike Lee (Utah), Mitch McConnell (Ky.), Jerry Moran (Kan.), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), David Perdue (Ga.), James Risch (Idaho), Pat Roberts (Kan.), Mike Rounds (S.D.), Ben Sasse (Neb.), Tim Scott (S.C.), Dan Sullivan (Alaska), Thom Tillis (N.C.), John Thune (S.D.), Pat Toomey (Pa.) and Roger Wicker (Miss.).
By Press TV