The chief of staff of Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, said on Thursday that the lifting of sanctions imposed by the international community after the 2015 nuclear agreement between Tehran and major powers, including the United States, would hinge on the complete dismantling of Iran’s missile program.
“The rapprochement of U.S. officials with the Islamic Republic, lifting of the sanctions, the economic boom are all only if Iran obtains a much-reduced system of defenses and missile systems,” Khamenei’s chief of staff, Hossein Salami, said in a speech broadcast on state television, according to the Iranian semiofficial Mehr news agency.
Salami’s remarks reflect a stance that Tehran has maintained throughout the talks with world powers on reviving the nuclear agreement. Still, Khamenei has not yet approved the nuclear deal, which would allow Iran to remain under international sanctions for as long as it complies with restrictions on its nuclear program. The United States has repeatedly called on Iran to meet four “serious, tangible” terms in order to lift the sanctions.