Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

"Why Are So Many Children Dying in Gaza?"

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Seleka calls for partition

Read more

DEBATE

Nigeria: One Hundred Days and Counting (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Nigeria: One Hundred Days and Counting

Read more

FOCUS

Can Chancellor Merkel's winning streak last?

Read more

FOCUS

Hunger in a fertile land...

Read more

ENCORE!

High-tech acting king Andy Serkis on Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Read more

REPORTERS

Hong Kong in rebellion against the 'motherland'

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Dalia Grybauskaite, President of the Republic of Lithuania

Read more

  • Israel faces heightened diplomatic pressure as Gaza violence rages

    Read more

  • France charges Swiss bank UBS with tax fraud

    Read more

  • In pictures: Thousands march for Gaza peace in Paris

    Read more

  • Cycling is ‘winning the war on doping,’ says expert

    Read more

  • Botched Arizona execution takes nearly two hours

    Read more

  • Bomb attacks leave scores dead in north Nigeria

    Read more

  • Netherlands holds day of mourning for victims of flight MH17

    Read more

  • Two Ukrainian fighter jets shot down over rebel-held territory

    Read more

  • Ryanair ordered to pay back €9.6m in illegal state aid to France

    Read more

  • Gaza protests: ‘France imported the Mideast conflict a long time ago’

    Read more

  • Video: Fear, death and mourning in Gaza’s Khan Younis

    Read more

  • TransAsia Airways Taiwan crash leaves dozens dead

    Read more

  • Poland’s Rafal Majka wins 17th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Young riders raise French hopes for Tour de France

    Read more

  • Defying UK, France to proceed with warships sale to Russia

    Read more

Americas

Advanced missile test draws sharp rebuke

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2009-12-16

Iran has successfully test-fired an improved version of its Sejil 2 medium-range missile, which it claims puts Israel and parts of Europe within range. Britain's Gordon Brown said the test made the case for further sanctions against Tehran.

AFP - A defiant Iran on Wednesday test-fired an improved version of its Sejil 2 medium-range missile which it says can reach targets inside Israel, prompting a sharp rebuke from Britain.

"It hit the defined target," state television reported, without giving further details.

The two-stage Sejil, powered by solid fuel, is capable according to Iran of travelling 2,000 kilometres (1,240 miles), which would put arch-foe Israel, most Arab states and parts of Europe, including much of Turkey, within range.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said the test of the missile was a matter of "serious concern" and makes the case for "moving further on sanctions."

Brown is in Copenhagen for the United Nations climate summit, where he discussed the development with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

"I have expressed to him and he has also expressed concern about the test of a long-range missile by Iran," Brown said, according to his Downing Street office in London.

"This is a matter of serious concern to the international community and it does make the case for us moving further on sanctions.

"We will treat this with the seriousness it deserves."

Iran is under three sets of UN sanctions for its refusal to suspend enrichment and risks a further round after rejecting a UN-brokered deal to send its low enriched uranium abroad to be further refined into fuel for a research reactor.

Enrichment lies at the heart of fears over Iran's controversial atomic work as the process to make nuclear fuel can also be used to make the fissile core of an atom bomb in much higher purifications.

The US House of Representatives on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved sanctions legislation aimed at forcing Iran to freeze the programme by depriving the Islamic republic of petrol.

The measure would empower US President Barack Obama to effectively block firms that supply Iran with refined petroleum products, or the ability to import or produce them at home, from doing business in the United States.

The United States and its regional ally Israel have not ruled out a military option to stop Tehran's nuclear drive.

Iran has in the past threatened to target US bases in the region and to block the strategic Gulf Strait of Hormuz waterway for oil tankers if its nuclear sites are attacked.

In late September the Islamic republic test-fired the previous version of Sejil 2 (Lethal Stone) and along with another similar-range weapon, the Shahab-3, and a host of shorter-range missiles as part of a military exercise.

The tests which came ahead of key talks between Iran and six world powers in Geneva drew the ire of the West, with Washington describing them as "provocative."

Date created : 2009-12-16

COMMENT(S)