Iran tests short-range missile with new guidance system
By Yeganeh Torbati
DUBAI (Reuters) - Iran has test-fired a new, more accurate short-range missile capable of striking land and sea targets, it said on Saturday, a show of strength that underscored its ability to hit shipping in the Strait of Hormuz if attacked.
Israel has said it is considering military strikes on Iran's nuclear sites if the Islamic Republic does not resolve Western fears it is developing atomic weapons technology, something Tehran denies.
Iran says it could hit Israel and U.S. bases in the region if it comes under attack. It has also threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz, the neck of the Gulf through which 40 percent of the world's sea-borne oil exports pass.
"With the fourth generation of the Fateh 110, the armed forces of our country are able to target and destroy land and sea targets, enemy headquarters ... missile seats, ammunition sites, radars and other points," Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi said in quotes carried by the official IRNA news agency.
The missile has a range of around 300 km (180 miles), meaning it could strike Iran's immediate neighbors and might also be able to hit Hormuz shipping, as well as energy facilities in Saudi Arabia and the U.S. fifth fleet in Bahrain.
Such moves would risk a military response from the United States.
"Using new guidance methods, target-striking systems were installed on the missiles and during the flight test ... its ability to hit the target without deviation was proven," Vahidi said, according to IRNA.
"In future programs, all future missiles built by the Defense Ministry will be equipped with this capability," he added. Continued...