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Sunday, August 20, 2006

Iran tests short-range missile

Al-AP reports from Iranian state television that Iran tested a short-range (80-250 kilometer) surface-to-surface missile today in the Kashan desert, about 250 kilometers southeast of Tehran.

The missile's name is Saegheh, which means lightning in Farsi.

The test took place as part of the war games currently being conducted in Iran.

State-run television said the missile was built based on domestic know-how, although outside experts say much of the country's missile technology originated from other countries.

State-run TV showed video showing 10 missiles being launched from mobile launching pads. [I'm not sure what Iran could hit with that kind of range - not Israel - although certainly Iraq and Afghanistan. But given the mobile launching pads, it would not surprise me if these missiles ultimately end up in Hezbullah's hands. CiJ]


On Sunday, Iran announced it will offer a "multifaceted response" to a Western package of incentives aimed at persuading it to suspend uranium enrichment activities, but insisted that it would not cease enriching uranium.

Iran is already equipped with the Shahab-3 missile, which means "shooting star" in Farsi, and is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead. An upgraded version of the ballistic missile has a range of more than 2,000 kilometers and can reach Israel and US forces in the Middle East.

Last year, former Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani said Tehran had successfully tested a solid fuel motor for the Shahab-3, a technological breakthrough for the country's military.

Iran's military test-fired a series of missiles during large-scale war games in the Persian Gulf in March and April, including a missile it claimed was not detectable by radar that can use multiple warheads to hit several targets simultaneously.

After decades of relying on foreign weapons purchases, Iran's military has been working to boost its domestic production of armaments.

Since 1992, Iran has produced its own tanks, armored personnel carriers, missiles and a fighter plane, the government has said. It announced in early 2005 that it had begun production of torpedoes.

This is where all their oil money is going. Those of you in Europe (the US does not buy Iranian oil), think about that when you take your car out today.


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