File. Members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard celebrate after launching a missile, July 2012 (photo credit: AP/IRNA, Mostafa Qotbi)

Dual alarm: U.S. and Russia both report Iran has test-fired an ICBM

The State
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Iran test-fired an advanced rocket system in the Dasht-e Kavir desert last week, according to Russian and American officials, in what some considered a cover for intercontinental ballistic missile research.

The Simorgh, as the rocket is known, is ostensibly designed to launch satellites into orbit. However, the technology involved is “practically identical” to intercontinental ballistic missiles, or ICBMs, and could be used to launch a nuclear device at targets thousands of miles away, according to Amir Toumaj, a research analyst at the Washington-based Foundation for Defense of Democracies think tank.

The rocket launch was initially detected by two separate Russian radar stations at 9:33 a.m. GMT on April 19, Russian media reported, and it was later confirmed by US sources who first disclosed the test fire to the Washington Free Beacon.

Under the Iran nuclear deal, which was signed last year, ballistic missile tests are not outright forbidden, but they are “not consistent” with a United Nations Security Council resolution from July 2015, US State Department spokesperson John Kirby said.

According to the UN decision, “Iran is called upon not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology” until October 2023.

This article continues at [Times of Israel] Iran may have secretly tested ballistic missile tech with ‘space launch’

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