Iran Majlis passes motion in response to USA sanctions

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

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

The motion was passed during an open parliamentary session on Sunday morning. The parliament's majority voted for the bill, which was a response to the US new sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

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.

Iranian parliamentarians responding to the recent United States sanctions on Tehran have tasked the government with allocating about $300 million to Quds force, the foreign arm of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC).

The US$520 million (Dh1.91bn) budget for the defence ministry and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' powerful Quds Force, which carries out operations to support the regime in Syria and militias in Iraq and elsewhere, was backed by 240 of the 247 members present in parliament, Iranian media reported.

He praised the bill, saying it "was designed wisely so that it does not violate the (nuclear deal) and provide excuses for opposing sides".

"I believe this law is an appropriate and wise response to the USA hostilities (against Iran)", Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Abbas Araqchi said on Sunday.

He went on to say that according to the law, the Iranian administration is obliged to monitor the United States government's anti-Iran measures and counteract them accordingly.

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

A second vote will now take place on the bill before it is submitted to a clerical body for final approval.

To counter U.S. economic sanctions, the government has been ordered to provide a comprehensive plan on expanding economic cooperation with world countries, especially Iran's neighbors and friends as well as the countries which have likewise been subject to Washington's embargoes.

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