WASHINGTON — The Latest on the West’s response to Iran’s launch of a satellite-carrying rocket into space (all times local):
The United States, France, Germany and Britain say they’re raising concerns with the United Nations over Iran’s launch of a satellite-carrying rocket into space.
The four countries brokered the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran along with China, Russia and the European Union. They say in a joint statement that Iran’s launch was “inconsistent” with a U.N. Security Council resolution that enshrined the nuclear deal.
The countries are avoiding saying Iran violated the U.N. resolution. That’s because the resolution only “calls upon” Iran not to develop ballistic missiles that could carry a nuclear payload. It doesn’t explicitly prohibit it.
The four nations say Iran’s missile development destabilizes the region and shouldn’t continue. France, Germany and the U.K. say they’re raising their concerns directly with Iran. The U.S. doesn’t maintain diplomatic relations with Tehran.
The United States is slapping Iran with new ballistic missiles sanctions in response to its launch of a satellite-carrying rocket into space a day earlier.
The sanctions target six Iranian subsidiaries of the Shahid Hemmat Industrial Group. The Treasury Department says that group is “central” to Iran’s ballistic missiles program.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says the sanctions illustrate deep U.S. concerns about Iran’s missile testing and other actions. He says the U.S. will continue countering Iran’s ballistic missile program including Thursday’s “provocative space launch.”
The U.S. has said that launch flouted a U.N. Security Council resolution because the technology is inherently designed to be able to carry a nuclear payload.
The sanctions come as the Trump administration continues debating its Iran policy and whether to scrap the 2015 nuclear deal.