Congressional Republicans are escalating their criticism of the Obama administration and its Iranian nuclear deal as news broke that the country has been covertly collaborating with North Korea on a new rocket booster for long-range missiles.
"While the president was undertaking his secret negotiations — which Congress wasn't informed of — he had to know Iran and North Korea were testing new engines for ballistic missiles to target the United States," said Alabama Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Armed Services subcommittee on strategic forces, according to The Washington Free Beacon.
"Every day the president's deal looks worse and worse," he said.
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is equally critical, saying the agreement with Iran neglected to address the threat of intercontinental ballistic missiles.
"The Iranian regime is clearly demonstrating through word and deed that they have no intention of moderating the behavior that earned them one of the harshest international programs of economic sanctions on record," Cruz told the Beacon.
"Relaxing the sanctions now only encourages them to continue their pursuit of nuclear weapons — and the means to deliver them to Israel, Europe and even the United States.
"I hope President Obama and Secretary [of State John] Kerry will reconsider this dangerous policy and add the immediate cessation of their ICBM program to the list of prerequisites placed on Iran before any additional negotiations take place," Cruz said.
A report Tuesday revealed that Iran has been secretly working with North Korea on a new 80-ton rocket booster than can be used in both countries' long-range missile programs, according to the Beacon
, citing officials familiar with intelligence reports.
Several groups of Iranian technicians traveled to Pyongyang over the last few months, including as recently as late October, to develop the booster which officials say could be used on both a space launcher and a long-range missile.
U.S. intelligence agencies believe the countries are using their space programs to hide long-range strategic missiles which could be used to launch nuclear warheads capable of reaching the U.S. within the next two years.
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