Iran parliament seeks to boost missile funding

North Korea’s announcement that it is finalising a plan to launch four ballistic missiles over Japan toward the island of Guam has touched off a series of fiery threats from president Donald Trump and upped tensions between Pyongyang and Washington to

Iran Allocates $520Mln for Missile Program in Response to New US Sanctions - AFP

The additional USA sanctions put in place last month directly target the missile programme and the IRGC.

The general outlines of the motion were passed with 240 votes in favour and one abstention during an open parliamentary session, Xinhua news agency reported. US President Trump has warned North Korea, an ally of Iran, against firing the missiles and says he will protect Guam, home to 163,000 US citizens if that happens.

This legislation was described as an effort to "counter America's terrorist and adventurist actions in the region" and heralded as a justified response to new sanctions adopted by the United States earlier this summer.

It would require Iran's government and armed forces to draw up a strategy to counter United States violations of human rights around the world, and to support Iranian bodies and individuals affected by United States sanctions.

Iran's parliament on Sunday approved an increased budget for the country's ballistic missile programme and the regional operations of its Revolutionary Guard, in defiance of U.S. sanctions imposed last month over Tehran's testing of new missile technology. The move follows a spike in tensions between Tehran and Washington since US President Donald Trump took office in January with a vow to get tough on the Islamic republic.

During his campaign he threatened to tear up the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, which he has called "the worst deal ever".

The bill is "very smart particularly because it doesn't violate the nuclear deal and doesn't allow the other side to make excuses", he added.

The bill must now pass a second vote before being submitted to a clerical body for final approval and passage into law.

But last month he backed away from his pledge to withdraw from the agreement.

Iran denies developing ballistic missiles created to carry nuclear weapons in violation of the agreement and has accused the U.S. of breaking its word by imposing fresh sanctions.

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