Iran reports long-range missile launch in exerciseJuly 4, 2012
Iran said Tuesday it test-fired several ballistic missiles, including a long-range variety meant to dissuade an Israeli or U.S. attack, alongside a push by Washington to beef up its military might in the region.
The powerful Revolutionary Guard's acting commander told state TV that the tests, aimed at mock enemy bases in a war games exercise, were a response to refusal by Israel and the U.S. to rule out military strikes to stop Iran's nuclear program.
"It is a response to the political impoliteness of those who talk about all options being on the table," Gen. Hossein Salami said.
The official IRNA news agency said the surface-to-surface missiles successfully hit their targets. The semi-official Fars said the salvos included the so-called Shahab-3 missile.
Iran has tested a variety of missiles in previous war games, including a Shahab-3 variant with a range of 2,000 kilometers that can reach Israel and southern Europe. The missiles are also capable of hitting U.S. bases in the region.
Iranian state TV showed video of several missiles being launched.
"So far, we have launched missiles from 300 to 1,300 kilometers (180 to 800 miles) in the maneuver," said Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, who heads the Guard's aerospace division. He hinted that some missiles had an even longer range.
Israel is about 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) away from Iran's western borders, while the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet is based in Bahrain, some 200 kilometers (120 miles) from Iranian shores in the Persian Gulf.
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