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Iran

Iran tests missiles in Gulf war games

Iran on Monday said it has successfully test fired two of its newly upgraded missiles during ongoing war games in the Gulf. Iran has said previously that it would strike Israel if it comes under attack.

Iranian navy fires a Mehrab missile during the 'Velayat-90' naval wargames in the Strait of Hormuz in southern Iran on January 1, 2012. Iran defiantly announced that it had tested a new missile and made an advance in its nuclear programme after the United States unleashed extra sanctions that sent its currency to a record low. AFP PHOTO/JAMEJAMONLINE/EBRAHIM NOROOZI (Photo credit should read EBRAHIM NOROOZI/AFP/Getty Images)

Archivbild Iran Kriegsschiff Straße von Hormus

A navy spokesman said that the improved version of the surface-to-air missile Raad (Thunder) can strike medium-range aerial targets and has already been installed on Iranian warships.

The Monday report by the official IRNA news agency quotes exercise spokesman Admiral Amir Rastgari as saying the Iranian-made air defense system was among the weapons tested, AP news agency reported.

Iran says the system fires missiles with a range of 50 kilometers (30 miles), capable of hitting targets at 22,000 meters (75,000 feet). He said torpedoes and underwater and surface-to-surface rockets were also successfully tested.

Fars news agency also reported that the improved version of the short-range cruise missile Nasr, which can be launched from both inland bases and offshore military vessels with the capability to destroy vessels of up to 3,000 tons, had been tested as well.

The Iranian navy on Friday started six days of war games within a large area of the Gulf, including the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic waterway for global oil exports in the Gulf, which Iranian generals have on several occasions threatened to block in case of a military conflict.

Iran has recently increased military exercises as international tensions grow over its nuclear programs. Israeli officials said they have not ruled out military strikes to deter Iran from developing nuclear weapons.

bk/dr (dpa, AP)