News Brief – February 7, 2011
Underlining Iran’s growing capability in developing its own weapons systems, the commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards unveiled a new anti-ship missile on Monday.
Speaking at a news conference in Tehran, Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari told reporters that the new missile was already in full production.
“These new missiles enjoys supersonic speed and cannot be tracked or intercepted by enemy,” he said, adding that the missiles could hit targets 300km away with a high degree of accuracy.
The missile’s range would give Iran the ability to target most of the maritime traffic in the Persian Gulf, particularly around the Strait of Hormuz. Enabling Tehran to shut off the waterway that is vital for the West’s oil supplies, if it was deemed necessary.
Major General Jafari said that more footage of the new missile, named “The Persian Gulf”, would be released in coming days.
At the same press conference, Jafari also announced that the IRGC has just finished designing and developing long-range passive radars that will soon start production.
Adding that the new radar system was effective within a 1,100km-radius, Jafari said that: “these radars would remarkably increase the IRGC’s capability in identifying sea-based targets”.
Iran has been pushing an arms development program in recent years in a bid to reach self-sufficiency in its defence needs.
Tehran began its domestic arms development program during the 1980-88 war with Iraq when the U.S. imposed a weapons embargo on Iran.
Ever since Iran has given priority to developing its own weapons systems to compensate for the Western imposed weapons embargo. In the process it has produced its own jet fighters and armoured vehicles as well as radar-avoiding missiles and unmanned combat drones.