New Iranian Cruise Missile Underscores Urgency Of Extending U.N. Prohibitions

(New York, N.Y.) — Last week, Iran’s Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Aerospace Force, announced the development of a cruise missile with a range sufficient to target Tel Aviv, Riyadh, and Dubai. International sanctions have slowed but not stopped Iran’s ability to modernize its military and produce increasingly capable ballistic missiles and cruise missiles. Stronger action is required, including immediate diplomatic mobilization to ensure that restrictions on Iran’s ballistic missile program under U.N. Security Council Resolution 2231, which expire in October 2023, are extended indefinitely. This can be done while avoiding a veto by China and Russia via the snapback sanctions mechanism under U.N. Security Council Resolution 2231.  

In February 2022, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence released its Annual Threat Assessment, which found that Iran possesses the largest and potentially most diverse ballistic missile arsenal in the Middle East. This poses an immediate threat to regional security and U.S. interests, particularly given Iran’s willingness to deploy these weapons against U.S. military personnel and U.S. partners and allies in the region. The IRGC and Iran-backed militias in Iraq have repeatedly fired missiles against U.S. forces operating in the region.  

The expiration of Resolution 2231’s missile restrictions would allow Iran to develop nuclear weapon delivery systems, including ICBMs, that could reach the U.S. homeland as soon as 2025. Iran never abided by the missile restrictions, but their expiration would further empower Iran to advance its missile program. 

To read UANI’s resource JCPOA Sunset Alert: Missile Restrictions, please click here.