Iranian Navy Test Fires Medium Range Surface To Air Missile

Strait of Hormuz, Jan 2: Iran's navy said on Sunday that it has test-fired a medium-range surface-to-air missile during a drill in international waters near the strategic Strait of Hormuz - the passageway for one-sixth
iranian navy test fires medium range surface to...
India TV News Desk 02 Jan 2012, 11:51 AM IST

Strait of Hormuz, Jan 2: Iran's navy said on Sunday that it has test-fired a medium-range surface-to-air missile during a drill in international waters near the strategic Strait of Hormuz - the passageway for one-sixth of the world's oil supply.

State TV said the missile, named Mehrab, or Altar, has been designed to evade radars and was developed by Iranian scientists.

Footage of the missile launch was shown on Iranian state-controlled IRIB and IRINN, and later on Sunday on the state-run Arabic language channel Al Alam.

A spokesman for the exercise, Rear Admiral Mahmoud Mousavi, said the missile is one of the newest in the navy's arsenal.

Sunday's drill also included missiles that were fired from a shore-based missile battery.

Overnight, the military manoeuvres involved targeting a hypothetical enemy vessel.

The 10-day exercise covers a 1,250-mile (2,000-kilometre) stretch of water beyond the Strait of Hormuz, including parts of the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden.

The drill, which could bring Iranian ships into proximity with US Navy vessels that operate in the same area, is Iran's latest show of strength in the face of mounting international criticism over its controversial nuclear programme.

The West fears Iran's programme aims to develop atomic weapons - a charge Tehran denies, insisting it's for peaceful purposes only.

The exercise drew significant attention after Iranian officials warned they may close the Strait of Hormuz, cutting off oil exports, if the West imposes sanctions on Iran's oil shipments.

But Iranian military officials later backed off from the threat, saying Tehran can easily close the strategic oil route at the mouth of the Persian Gulf but has no intention of doing so at this point.

 
 
 

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