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U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates confirmed that Iran launched a medium-range ballistic missile in May with the capacity to reach Israel, U.S. bases in the Middle East and parts of Europe:
"The information that I have read indicates that it was a successful flight test. The missile will have a range of approximately 2,000 to 2,500 kilometers. Because of some of the problems they've had with their engines, we think at least at this stage of the testing, it's probably closer to the lower end of that range."
U.S. White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said that President Barack Obama was concerned "about Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons capability and nuclear weapons technology." Mr. Gibbs said that President Obama believes that "the pursuit of those programs do not strengthen the security of Iran, but instead make them less safe."
Testifying before congress, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said that "a nuclear-armed Iran with a deliverable weapons system is going to spark an arms race in the Middle East and the greater region:"
"That is not going to be in the interest of Iranian security. And we believe that we have a very strong case to make for that. At the same time, we see a growing recognition among a number of countries that they do not want this eventuality to take place. So we're having serious conversations with many beyond the immediate region."
"Our goal is to persuade the Iranian regime that they will actually be less secure if they proceed with their nuclear weapons program," said Secretary Clinton. She noted that the U.S. will "either see some openness and some willingness to engage on this very important issue, or we don’t," said Secretary of State Clinton. "But we are going to pursue our diplomatic efforts."