TEHRAN, Iran -- Iran's president said Thursday the Islamic Republic soon will send two new satellites into orbit using Iran-made rockets, despite U.S. concern the launch could help further develop its ballistic missiles.
President Hassan Rouhani's comments, during a commemoration for the late President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, confirmed the rocket launches would take place.
Iran typically displays achievements in its space program in February, during the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. This year will mark the 40th anniversary of the revolution, which saw the Persian monarchy of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi replaced by the Islamic Republic overseen by a Shiite cleric.
"Soon, in the coming weeks, we will send two satellites into space using our domestically-made rockets," Rouhani said, without elaborating.
Previously, Iran has sent several short-lived satellites into orbit over the past decade, and in 2013 launched a monkey into space. The U.S. and its allies worry the same satellite-launching technology could be used to develop long-range missiles.