Tehran space program widely believed to be cover for nuclear-capable ICBM
Iran is working to send a man into space within the next five years as part of its contested rocket launching program that is widely believed by the United States and other governments to be a cover for the Islamic Republic's work on advanced intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear weapons.
Iran first launched a satellite into space in 2009, and since the signing of the landmark nuclear deal that freed up billions in cash windfalls, it has continued to work on advanced rocket systems that are very similarly related to ICBM technology, which could carry a nuclear weapon.
A recent report on Iran's space program carried by one of the country's state news channels disclosed this month that Tehran now has a new goal: To launch a man into space within the next five years.
"In the framework of a five-year plan, we intend to launch a man into space on our own, in order to become one of the aerospace industry powers," the news report stated, according to a translationprovided by the Middle East Media Research Institute. "We hope to see that day."
However, the U.S. diplomatic and national security class has accused Iran of using its space program as a cover to test-fire advance ballistic missile technology such as that needed to launch a nuclear weapon long distances.