BEIRUT

Middle East

Iran claims to have tested new missiles

A picture obtained from Iran's ISNA news agency shows an anti-missile system dubbed the Sayyad-2 (Hunter 2), during the inauguration of it's production line in Tehran on November 9, 2013. AFP PHOTO/ISNA/STR

TEHRAN: Iran said Monday it has "successfully tested" two missiles on the eve of the 35th anniversary of its Islamic revolution, the official IRNA news agency reported.

Iran's ballistic missile programme has long been a source of concern for Western nations because it is capable of striking its arch-foe Israel. 

"The new generation of ballistic missile with a fragmentation warhead, and a Bina laser-guided surface-to-surface and air-to-surface missile, have been successfully tested," Defence Minister Hossein Dehgan said.

He said the new ballistic missile could "evade anti-missile systems" and was capable of "great destruction."

The other missile can be fired from a plane or a boat to strike military targets with "great precision," he added.

President Hassan Rouhani, a moderate elected last year on promises to engage the West diplomatically, congratulated the Iranian people and Supreme Guide Ayatollah Ali Khamenei over the tests, IRNA reported.

The UN Security Council, the United States and the European Union have long imposed sanctions on Iran's ballistic missile programme.

Iranian officials have said they will not discuss the missile programme at talks with world powers later this month on Tehran's controversial nuclear activities.

Western nations and Israel suspect Iran is covertly pursuing nuclear weapons alongside its civilian programme, allegations denied by Tehran.

 

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