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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 20 June 2018

Iran seeks to examine missile parts displayed by US diplomat

US Defence Secretary James Mattis told reporters at the Pentagon earlier this week that Iran was involved in turmoil throughout the Middle East

US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley unveils previously classified information intending to prove Iran violated UNSCR 2231 by providing the Houthi rebels in Yemen with arms. AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley unveils previously classified information intending to prove Iran violated UNSCR 2231 by providing the Houthi rebels in Yemen with arms. AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON

Iran wants to examine missile parts the US ambassador to the United Nations displayed last week as “undeniable” evidence that Tehran has been arming Yemen’s Shiite rebels.

The news comes as Defence Secretary James Mattis told reporters at the Pentagon earlier this week that Iran was involved in turmoil throughout the Middle East.

During an impromptu news conference, Mr Mattis addressed questions about Iran and US efforts to expose Iran’s malicious behaviour, saying: “Everywhere you find turmoil [in the Middle East], you find Iran’s hand in it,”

He praised US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley’s presentation last week that highlighted Iran’s illegal arms program. Ms Haley stood in front of an Iranian missile that Iran’s proxy – the Houthis – fired at Riyadh International Airport, a civilian target in Saudi Arabia. The missile didn’t hit the airport, but if it had, it potentially could have killed hundreds of innocent civilians.

Following this presentation, Defence Minister General Amir Hatami says Iran will file a complaint to the U.N. and demand that “parts of the missile be delivered to Iran” for examination.

He told the semi-official Tasnim news agency on Monday that U.S. claims cannot be “answered remotely.”

Ms Haley last week showed off the missile parts to cameras at a military base near Washington. She said the projectile was supplied by Iran and launched by Yemen’s Houthis at the airport in the Saudi capital, Riyadh.

Iran dismissed it as a “fake and fabricated” claim. Tehran denies arming Yemen’s rebels in the war with Saudi Arabia.