0819 GMT January 22, 2019
“Missile program will proceed according to the approved plans,” Hatami told reporters on Sunday following the first cabinet session of the newly-formed Iranian government, according to Press TV.
In response to a question about some foreign countries’ pressure on Iran to stop its missile program, he added that such activities “would not be affected by any type of pressure.”
The minister vowed to continue activities related to the country’s defense industry “with utmost power” and emphasized that the Islamic Republic “will not allow any suspension in the work of the Defense Ministry even for one day.”
All but one of President Hassan Rouhani's proposed ministers, the nominee for the Ministry of Energy, won the Iranian Parliament's vote of confidence on Sunday. The president has not presented his nominee for the post of the minister of science, research and technology.
The new minister of defense received the highest number of votes, with 261 lawmakers supporting him. Only 10 MPs voted against him while 13 others abstained.
Briefing a group of lawmakers on his future plans on Saturday, Hatami said the current situation was special as the enemies had imposed sanctions on Iran’s military in a bid to weaken it, pledging to continue boosting the country’s missile program.
“The enemy is stationed in the region, brings weapons to the region and tries to damage the country’s defense might, but we have set objectives in our plan to counter the move,” he added.
The Iranian general also hailed achievements made in both missile and defense industry sectors and stressed that this trend should continue.
Iran’s Army praised the country’s progress in the defense industry as a potent symbol of self-sufficiency and self-reliance.
In a statement issued on the occasion of the National Day of Defense Industry on Monday, the army said the country’s advances in various military fields have turned the defense sector into a symbol of self-sufficiency, Tasnim News Agency wrote.
It also emphasized that the army, with its great homegrown capabilities and equipment, is prepared to combat any potential or practical threat posed by the enemies of the Islamic Revolution.
Iranian military experts and technicians have in recent years made great headways in manufacturing a broad range of indigenous equipment, making the armed forces self-sufficient in the arms sphere.
Iranian military officials maintain that the country does not favor a war, but it is fully prepared to respond to any hostile assault.
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has on several occasions cautioned the adversaries that Iran’s response to any assault will not be confined to defense alone, but aggressors will face a crushing response.