Iran says it will continue its ballistic missile program after claims made by the U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon that its missile tests aren't in the spirit of the country's landmark nuclear deal with world powers.

In comments published on Iran's foreign ministry website Saturday, spokesman Bahram Ghasemi says that "Iran will strongly continue its missile program based on its own defense and national security calculations."

He says that Iran's missile program is not linked to the nuclear deal and does not conflict with the U.N. Security Council resolution endorsing the agreement.

In the first six-month report to the U.N. Security Council on the implementation of the resolution, the U.N. chief calls on Iran to stop the tests and says they increase tensions in the Mideast.