The Iranian parliament Tuesday passed a bill approving the deal on the country’s nuclear program with the six world powers, Iran’s state media reported. Under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) -- reached in July after protracted negotiations -- crippling sanctions against Iran will be lifted in exchange for the country limiting its sensitive nuclear program and allowing international inspectors limited access to its military sites.
“The bill to implement the JCPOA ... was passed in a public session on Tuesday with 161 votes in favor,” the state-run IRNA news agency reported. Thirteen lawmakers reportedly abstained.
The parliamentary approval comes just days after Iran test-fired a long-range missile, leading the U.S. State Department to say it would take “appropriate actions” at the United Nations if the move violated U.N. Security Council resolutions.
The Iranian government, however, rejected the accusation that the test violated the terms of the nuclear deal, and said the country would not compromise on its defense.
“We don’t ask anyone’s permission to enhance our defense power or missile capability and will firmly pursue our defense plans, particularly in the field of missiles,” Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan reportedly said Sunday.
The deal, struck after nearly 20 months of negotiations, has faced opposition from hard-liners in both Iran and the U.S. Last month, Republicans in the U.S. Congress tried to sink the deal by voting on a motion of disapproval. However, Democrats rallied against the motion, eventually gathering enough votes to block it, resulting in a major foreign policy victory for President Barack Obama.