Iran plans to boost ballistic and cruise missile capacity, new fighter jets and submarines
Iran plans to boost its ballistic and cruise missile capacity, as well as acquire a new generation fighter planes and submarines, the Iranian state news agency IRNA quoted a senior Defense Ministry official as saying on Saturday.
“Increasing ballistic and cruise missile capacity … and the acquisition of new generation fighters and heavy and long-range vessels and submarines with various weapons capabilities are among the new plans of this ministry,” said Mohammad Ahadi, deputy defense minister for international affairs, IRNA said.’
“We have the necessary infrastructure and what we need to do is research and development, and at the same time upgrade and update the defense industry while relying on the country’s very high scientific capacities and tens of thousands of graduates in technical fields and engineering,” Ahadi was quoted as saying.
Iran has given ballistic missiles to Shi’ite proxies in Iraq and is developing the capacity to build more there to deter attacks on its interests in the Middle East and to give it the means to hit regional enemies, Iranian, Iraqi and Western sources said on Friday.
The Zelzal, Fateh-110 and Zolfaqar missiles in question have ranges of about 200 km to 700 km, putting Saudi Arabia’s capital Riyadh or the Israeli city of Tel Aviv within striking distance if the weapons were deployed in southern or western Iraq.
Last month Iran unveiled its first domestic fighter jet at a defense propaganda show in Tehran.
Images released by Tasnim showed a dual-cockpit jet with a single tail fin, resembling the US-made F-5F Tiger. That aircraft, which first flew in 1974, is a variant of the 1950s-era US Northrop F-5 fighter that is a long-time mainstay of the Iranian Air Force.