Iran lawmakers vote to boost spending on missile program
By a huge majority, members of Iran’s parliament voted Sunday to increase spending on the nation’s ballistic missile program and finance its paramilitary Revolutionary Guard.
Members of Parliament chanted "Death to America" during the session, the Associated Press reported.
The vote was viewed as a response to recently announced U.S. sanctions against the Muslim country.
Iran’s state-run IRNA news agency reported that 247 lawmakers attended the vote session, with 240 approving the spending plan and one lawmaker abstaining.
No specifics were available about how the new funds would be used.
The bill now heads to an oversight committee called the Guardian Council, which is expected to approve it.
Abbas Araghchi, a deputy foreign minister and senior nuclear negotiator on hand for the vote, said moderate President Hassan Rouhani's government would support the bill.
"The bill has very wisely tried not to violate the (nuclear deal) and also gives no chance to the other party to manipulate it," he said in comments reported by IRNA.
Under terms of the bill, some $800 million will be put toward several projects, including the Defense Ministry and its intelligence agencies. Among the agencies receiving money would be the Revolutionary Guards' Quds force, an expeditionary force run by Gen. Qassem Soleimani, who has been in Syria and Iraq.