The Iranian Army Chief this week told the United States that calling the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) a “terrorist group” would be a “big risk” to American forces and bases in Iran, and also that placing sanctions on Iran’s missile program is “never negotiable.”
The IRGC is a branch of Iran’s Armed Forces that is tasked with protecting the country’s Islamic nature, and say its role is to prevent foreign interference and coups.
“Drawing an analogy between the IRGC and terrorist groups and imposing the same sanctions on the IRGC would be a big risk to the U.S. and its bases and forces stationed in the region,” said the Iranian Army’s Chief of Staff, Major Gen. Mohammad Hossein Bagheri, speaking to a group of military commanders in Mashhad, according to a report.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran’s missile power is defensive and is never negotiable at any level,” he added, according to the report.
The U.S. Senate in June passed legislation – the Countering Iran’s Destabilizing Activities Act of 2017 – that would increase sanctions against Iran for ballistic missile testing and other “non-nuclear provocations,” the report stated, as well as impose sanctions against the Iranian Revolutionary Guards.
The bill heads to the U.S. House of Representatives next, and then would go to President Donald Trump.