US experts: Iran deal no reason to halt work on Gulf missile shield

WASHINGTON - The Unites States will keep working on a regional missile defense system in the Gulf despite progress on the Iran nuclear deal, current and former US military officials said on Thursday while warning that Iran has the largest inventory of short- and medium-range cruise and ballistic missiles in the region.
The comments came as a Republican-backed effort to kill the Iran nuclear agreement was narrowly blocked in the US Senate, handing President Barack Obama a huge victory and clearing the way for the deal's implementation.
Robert Scher, assistant defense secretary for strategy, plans and capabilities, told lawmakers the Pentagon would continue to push for cooperative missile defense programs since the nuclear deal did not cover Iran's work on ballistic missiles.
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