Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami (photo) announced his country’s plans to boost the range of its air-based cruise missiles to over 1,000 kilometers.
“We have reached the range of over 1,000 Km in anti-surface and marine cruise missiles, the range of nearly 1,000 Km in ground-based cruise missiles and the range of 22km in air-based cruise missiles which will soon increase to over 1,000 Km,” General Hatami said in an interview with the Persian-language Iran newspaper, Fars News Agency (FNA) reported..
He added that Iran produces over 90% of its Armed Forces’ needs to weapons, noting that the remaining 10% does not play a decisive role in the country’s defense power.
General Hatami said that after removal of the UN arms embargos against Iran, the country will be an exporter of weapons and military equipment, adding that a number of products that have not been mentioned by the sanctions are being exported now.
Iran in August unveiled several home-made defense equipment, including a long-range ballistic missile and a cruise missile system.
The two missiles, designed and manufactured by Iranian experts, were unveiled on the occasion the National Defense Industry Day in Iran.
The unveiling ceremony was held in the presence of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani via video conference.
Speaking at the event broadcast live on TV, General Hatami said the country had inaugurated a surface-to-surface ballistic missile with a range of 1,400 kilometers named after Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, who was martyred by the US military in January.
Iran has also developed a cruise missile, named Martyr Abu Mahdi, which has a range of over 1,000 kilometers, he said.
“The country’s achievements in the defense industry over the past four decades are not comparable to any other period,” General Hatami said, describing the accomplishments as a “basis for military self-reliance and a must for [maintaining] the country’s independence”.
Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis was also assassinated along with General Soleimani and a number of their comrades in a US drone raid near the Baghdad International Airport on January 3, 2020.
Iran’s Deputy Defense Minister Brigadier General Qassem Taqizadeh said the speed of the Martyr Qassem Soleimani missiles makes their interception impossible. He added that the cruise missile is capable of flying at a low altitude and getting around the enemy’s missile systems.