Germany urges Iran to stop ’sabre rattling’July 9th, 2008 - 8:21 pm ICT by IANS
Berlin, July 9 (DPA) The German government called on Iran Wednesday to stop “all forms of sabre rattling” following its testing of nine missiles over the Gulf. German government spokesman Thomas Steg said the tests had been noted “with concern” and drew attention to the possibility that the missiles were suitable for carrying nuclear warheads.
“The German government calls on Iran to halt all forms of sabre rattling,” Steg said.
European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana visited Tehran in mid-June with a renewed offer from the international community intended as demonstrating goodwill and aimed at bridge-building, Steg said.
Tehran has now responded with “a gesture of ill will”, Steg said.
The German government, which has been closely involved in the negotiations with Tehran aimed at halting Iran’s uranium enrichment programme, was still aiming at a negotiated solution to the crisis, Steg said.
But he called on Tehran to do something actively to enhance confidence and to avoid all escalation.
Iran’s official IRNA news agency and Fars news agency reported the tests earlier Wednesday.
“We fired the missiles to show a part of our national defence capability to those who recently threatened Iran,” said General Hossein Salami, commander of the air wing of the paramilitary Revolutionary Guards.
Among the missiles was an upgraded version of the Shahab-3, which reportedly has a range of up to 2,000 kilometres and is capable of hitting targets in Israel.
Tags: bridge building, defence capability, enrichment programme, escalation, german government, government spokesman, javier solana, kilometres, missiles, national defence, news agency, nuclear warheads, policy chief, revolutionary guards, sabre rattling, salami, shahab 3, steg, tehran, uranium enrichment