09:09 GMT25 October 2020
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    Tehran earlier announced that it had launched a new military satellite into low Earth orbit, after the country failed in several previous attempts to send a civilian-made device in space.

    Vice-chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, General John Hyten, stated that the 'Noor' ('Light' in Farsi) Iranian satellite "went a very long way" but refused to confirm that it was able to reach its designated orbit. The general suggested that he would be able to clarify the fate of the Noor, as soon as he has additional information.

    Hyten said the US is monitoring the launch of the Iranian satellite closely, characterizing the orbital platform as a new "hostile" act by Tehran that purportedly threatens the region and the world.

    Earlier, the US Secretary of State slammed the launch, stating that Iran should "be held accountable for what it's done", claiming that the launch violated UN Security Council resolution 2231. The resolution, however, does not prohibit Iran from launching satellites, but rather calls upon the country to avoid testing and launching any type of ballistic missiles, including those used in space programmes.

    The purpose of the Noor satellite remains unknown, although it is said to be slated for use by the Iranian military. Prior to the 22 April launch, Tehran in 2020 and 2019 made several unsuccessful attempts to launch civilian satellites into low Earth orbit.

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    Tags:
    ballistic missile test, ballistic missile, launch, Satellite, Iran, US
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