Iran’s military test-fired what it described as a “mid-range cruise missile” during war games in the Persian Gulf today.
The land-based weapon is intended to hit naval targets and was fired from a mobile launcher, the state-run Mehr news agency said. The exercises began May 5 in the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman, during which it also tested anti-submarine torpedoes.
The Strait of Hormuz, which lies between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, is a transit route for 20 percent of the world’s oil, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. The exercises come as the U.S. pushes for a fourth set of United Nations sanctions against Iran over the country’s nuclear program and follow three days of war games by the separate naval forces of the Revolutionary Guard Corps last month.
Iran has hailed recent military advances as proof that it is technologically self-sufficient, even as it remains under three sets of United Nations sanctions for refusing to scale back its nuclear program.
In February and March, the Persian Gulf nation fired a domestically-built rocket into space carrying a satellite, announced plans to launch the first domestically made naval destroyer and fighter squadron, and said it will test a 2,000-pound bomb.
The New York Times reported on Jan. 31 that President Barack Obama is accelerating the deployment of U.S. defenses against possible Iranian missile attacks in the Persian Gulf.