Iran test-fires new missiles

January 1st, 2012 - 6:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Tehran, Jan 1 (IANS) Iran Sunday successfully test-fired its new surface-to-air missiles during an naval exercise in the Strait of Hormuz, the official media reported.

The 10-day exercise, dubbed Velayat 90, was launched Dec 24 to tests the country’s military capabilities.

Navy chief Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari said the missiles were built by Iranian scientists.

He added that surface-to-sea, shoulder-launched missiles and torpedoes will also be tested, the state-run IRNA news agency reported.

The drills cover an area from the east of the Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf to the Gulf of Aden.

The Pentagon last Wednesday warned Iran against any attempt to block the Strait, one of the world’s most critical oil routes.

“This is not just an important issue for security and stability in the region, but is an economic lifeline for countries in the Gulf.

“Interference with the transit or passage of vessels through the Strait of Hormuz will not be tolerated,” Xinhua quoted Pentagon press secretary George Little as saying.

The remarks came after Iran’s top officials threatened to seal off the important oil route.

On Tuesday, Iran’s First Vice President Mohammad-Reza Rahimi had said that Iran will close the Strait of Hormuz if the West put sanctions on its oil exports.

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