Just two months after signing an historic nuclear deal with the West, Iran has tested a further two ballistic missiles it says are designed to be able to hit Israel.
Similar tests on Tuesday triggered warnings of new sanctions from the US, whose Vice President is currently visiting Israel.
An Iranian Army Brigadier is quoted by Iranian news agencies as saying the missiles were designed to have a striking range of 2,000 kilometres to be able to hit what he called “the Zionist regime” from a safe distance.
Joe Biden, the US Vice President, told a news conference in Jerusalem: “We are united in the belief that a nuclear armed Iran is absolutely an unacceptable threat to Israel to the region and to the United States.
“And I want to reiterate what I know people still doubt here: if in fact they break the deal, we will act.”
Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps maintains its short and medium-range missiles are for defence reasons only and carry conventional, non-nuclear warheads.
Iranian agencies report the missiles tested were stamped with the phrase “Israel should be wiped from the pages of history”.
The Israeli Defence Minister says it confirms that some in the West have been misled by what he calls the “honeyed” words of part of the Iranian leadership.
Get a different perspective