Iran announces plan to launch 2 satellites into orbit on domestically made rockets

Iran’s president on Thursday confirmed the coming launch of two new satellites into orbit as the U.S. remained concerned that the Iran-made rockets could help further its ballistic missile development.

President Hassan Rouhani confirmed the Islamic Republic will launch the rockets “in the coming weeks.” He said the satellites will be delivered by domestically made rockets. He didn’t elaborate further.
The U.S. and its allies are concerned that the same satellite-launching technology could be used to develop long-range missiles.

Earlier in January, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Iran’s plans for sending satellites into orbit demonstrate the country’s defiance of a U.N. Security Council resolution that calls on Iran to undertake no activity related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons.

Iran insists the launches do not violate the resolution.

Previously, Iran has sent several short-lived satellites into orbit over the past decade, and in 2013 launched a monkey into space.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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