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Iran test fires missile during Hormuz war games

By Agence France-Presse
Sunday, January 1, 2012 4:00 EDT
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Iran successfully test fired a medium-range surface-to-air missile on Sunday during navy war games taking place near the strategic Strait of Hormuz, a spokesman for the manoeuvres said, according to the official IRNA news agency.

“This medium-range surface-to-air missile is equipped with the latest technology to combat radar-evading targets and intelligent systems which try to disrupt missile navigation,” Commodore Mahmoud Mousavi was quoted as saying.

He said it was the first time Iran had tested the missile, which was “domestically designed and built.”

It was not immediately known whether the missile was fired from a ship or from land.

The missile’s launch and the war games are meant to show Iran’s military capabilities at a time that the United States and other Western nations are increasing pressure over Tehran’s nuclear programme.

The fact that they are taking place near the Strait of Hormuz has focused attention on Iran’s threats in recent days that it could close the narrow channel at the entrance to the Gulf if more sanctions are imposed.

In a move that could intensify a brewing Gulf showdown, US President Barack Obama on Saturday signed into law tough new sanctions targeting Iran’s central bank and financial sector.

Twenty percent of the world’s oil passes through the strait, making it the “most important chokepoint” globally, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
AFP journalists cover wars, conflicts, politics, science, health, the environment, technology, fashion, entertainment, the offbeat, sports and a whole lot more in text, photographs, video, graphics and online.
 
 
 
 
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