WASHINGTON, April 25. /TASS /. While launching its military satellite on April 22, Iran used technologies obtained as a result of the ballistic missile program, US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo said in a statement released by the US Department of State on Saturday.
According to the US foreign policy chief, Iran’s "satellite launch vehicle and others launched before it incorporate technologies identical to, and interchangeable with, ballistic missiles, including longer-range systems such as intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs)."
"No country has ever pursued an ICBM capability except for the purpose of delivering nuclear weapons," he said.
According to Pompeo, Tehran’s space program "is neither peaceful nor entirely civilian," and the recent satellite launch was a yet another proof of this.
He called upon the international community to prevent Iran from continuing its ballistic missile program.
The US secretary of State also called upon the UN Security Council to extend the existing arms embargo on Iran, which expires in October.
"We also call on the European Union to sanction those individuals and entities working on Iran’s missile programs," he said.
'A tumbling webcam in space'
The military satellite, recently put into the orbit by Iran, is hardly capable of providing intelligence data, said Gen. John Raymond, the chief of Space Operations of the US Space Force.
"US SpaceCom continues to track 2 objects <...> associated w/space launch from Iran," he said on Twitter, adding that the US military characterized Iran’s Nour 01 as a 3U Cubesat-type microsatellite.
"Iran states it has imaging capabilities—actually, it’s a tumbling webcam in space; unlikely providing intel," he said.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Friday that none of Tehran’s actions violated UN Security Council Resolution 2231 on Iran’s nuclear program, while the United States and Europe fail to observe its provisions. In his words, Tehran honors the resolution and possesses "neither nuclear weapons nor [nuclear-capable] missiles."
On April 22, Iran launched its first military satellite named Noor (or Light). According to Iran’s Mehr news agency, the satellite was put into an orbit of 425 km by the Qased carrier rocket.