A glance at Iran’s missile power
Baku, Azerbaijan, March 21
By Farhad Daneshvar - Trend:
Iranian media sources have widely reported on the following home-grown missiles exhibited or test-fired over the last Iranian calendar year, 1394 (ended March 20).
Media reports suggested that Iran maintains dozens of short, medium and long-range ballistic missiles with one of the largest missile arsenals in the Middle East.
Although several Western and regional countries have expressed concerns over Iran's missile program, the Islamic Republic has repeatedly said that its military might poses no threat to other countries, reiterating that its defense doctrine is merely based on deterrence.
Last October, in defiance of threats by the West to impose sanctions over Iran's ballistic missiles tests, Tehran test-fired its precision-guided long-range missiles dubbed Emad triggering controversies.
After test-firing the Emad missile, several Western sources claimed that Tehran violated a UN Security Council's resolution prohibiting the country from developing missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads.
The UNSC resolution 2231, adopted July 20, 2015, endorses the nuclear deal between Tehran and the world powers and calls upon Iran not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles that can deliver nuclear weapons, as well as launching ballistic missiles.
However, Iranian officials including Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif dismissed the accusation saying the Emad missile has not been designed for delivering a nuclear warhead stressing that the Islamic Republic does not own any nuclear warheads.
Underground missile facility
Just a few days after test-firing Emad missiles, Iranian state-run TV channels on October 14, 2015, aired footage of an underground missile facility packed with missiles ready to be launched. The facility has reportedly been dug some 500 meters deep under a mountain.
Later in January, the country shared footage of its second underground missile base announcing that the revolutionary guards have developed a number of such bases across the country.
Qadr ballistic missiles
Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) test-fired two ballistic missiles during missile drills codenamed "Eqtedar-e-Velayat 1", held in March.
The IRGC hit pre-designated targets by Qadr H and Qadr F ballistic missiles in a range of 1,400 km in the country's southern coasts of Mokran. The Revolutionary Guards launched the missiles from the heights of East Alborz Mountains, north of Iran. Media reports suggest that the missiles are capable of striking targets within the 2,000 km range.
Following the drills some Western sources claimed that the ballistic missiles launch breached the terms of a July nuclear deal between Iran and the world powers, however the White House dismissed the allegations saying the ballistic missile tests did not violate the nuclear agreement.
Last August, Iran test-fired a new solid-fuel precision-guided missile, namely Fateh 313, which is capable of striking targets with pin-point accuracy within a range of 500 km.
Nasr cruise missile
Iran put on display air-launched Nasr Cruise missile and inaugurated its production line on August 25, 2015. Later in February the first batch of the cruise missile was delivered to the country's Air Force. Nasr missiles are capable of being installed on different types of jet fighters.
Although in January, the US Department of the Treasury imposed new sanctions against a group of Iranian citizens and companies over the country's ballistic missile program, the Islamic Republic appears determined to enhance its missile capabilities.
Farhad Daneshvar is Trend Agency's staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @Farhad_Danesh