Tehran: Iran’s navy said on Monday it test-fired a range of weapons during ongoing maneuvers near the Strait of Hormuz, the passageway for one-fifth of the world’s oil supply.
IRNA quoted Adm. Amir Rastgari, spokesman for the exercise, as saying the Iranian-made air defence system Raad, or Thunder, was among the weapons tested, along with various torpedoes and underwater and surface-to-surface rockets as well as anti-ship missiles. The Islamic Republic said it also deployed domestically-made hovercraft during the operation.
The Raad system was on show during a military parade in Tehran in September for the first time. Iran says is more advanced than its Russian predecessor and is designed to confront fighter jets, cruise missiles, smart bombs, helicopters and drones. Iran said the system fires missiles with a range of 50 kilometers, capable of hitting targets at 22,000 metres.
Tehran has tried to build a self-sufficient military programme since 1992. It frequently announces technological breakthroughs, most of which cannot be confirmed independently.
Iran’s military leaders have recently said they believe future wars will be air — and sea-based and Tehran has sought to upgrade its air defence systems and naval power in anticipation of such a possibility.