DUBAI (Reuters) – Iran successfully test-fired a ballistic missile with a range of 2,000 kilometers on Thursday, state media said, two days after the head of Israel’s armed forces raised the possibility. ability to “take action” against Tehran over its nuclear program.
Iran, which has one of the largest missile programs in the Middle East, says its weapons are capable of reaching the bases of arch-enemies Israel and the United States in the region.
Despite objections from the US and Europe, the Islamic Republic said it would continue to develop its “defensive” missile program.
“Our message to Iran’s enemies is that we will defend the country and its achievements. Our message to our friends is that we want to help stabilize the region,” he said. Iran Chamber Mohammadreza Ashtiani said.
State television aired a few seconds of footage it said was the launch of an upgraded version of Iran’s Khoramshahr 4 ballistic missile with a range of 2,000 km (1,243 miles) and can carry a 1,500 kg warhead. (3,300 pounds).
State news agency IRNA said the liquid-fueled missile was named “Kheibar”, a reference to a Jewish castle occupied by Muslim militants in the early days of Islam.
“The outstanding features of the locally produced Kheibar missile include its quick preparation and launch time, making it a tactical weapon in addition to a strategic weapon,” the statement said.
Israel, which is not recognized by the Islamic Republic, sees Iran as an existential threat. Iran says its ballistic missiles are an important deterrent and retaliatory force against the United States, Israel and other potential adversaries in the region.
An Israeli military spokesman said the army does not comment on such matters.
On Tuesday, Israel’s top general discussed the possibility of military action against Iran as efforts by six world powers to revive Tehran’s 2015 nuclear deal have stalled since then. since September last year, amid growing Western concern about Tehran’s accelerating nuclear advances.
The deal Washington abandoned in 2018 imposed restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activities, extending the time it would take Tehran to produce enough fissile material for a nuclear bomb, should it choose to do so. so. Iran denies seeking nuclear weapons.