Iran’s foreign minister says missile programme not negotiable with US


Iran’s foreign minister said on Sunday the country’s missile programme was not up for negotiation with the United States.

The missile programme and “defence capabilities of the Islamic Republic of Iran are not negotiable,” said Moham­mad Javad Zarif after a meeting with his Estonian counterpart, Marina Kaljurand.

He said that if Washington was serious about defence issues in the Middle East, it should stop supplying arms to Saudi Arabia and Israel.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said recently the US and its partners were telling Iran that they were “prepared to work on a new arrangement to find a peaceful solution to these issues”. He said Iran first had to make it clear to all involved that they were prepared to cease provocative ballistic missile launches and tests.

Mr Zarif on Sunday also hinted that regional US allies were among those quietly supporting the militant Islamic State group. “The US needs to view regional issues more seriously than raise baseless and threadbare allegations against Iran,” he said. “Mr Kerry should ask US allies where the Islamic State’s arms come from.”