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Iran Fires Ballistic Missiles From Underground for 1st Time

Iran Fires Ballistic Missiles From Underground for 1st Time

Thursday, 30 July, 2020 - 04:30
This handout photo provided by Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) on July 28, 2020 shows rockets being fired from a launch vehicle during a military exercise near the Strait of Hormuz - SEPAH NEWS/AFP
Asharq Al-Awsat

Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards fired ballistic missiles from underground for the first time on Wednesday during the second day of military exercises near Gulf waters.

Head of the aerospace division of the Guards Amirali Hajizadeh said in a video posted online by Young Journalists Club, a news agency linked to Iran’s state TV, that this came as part of the annual military drill.

The video showed clouds of dust before the missiles streaked into the sky.

This came a day after the IRGC struck a mock-up of a US aircraft carrier with volleys of missiles near the Strait of Hormuz, a vital shipping lane for a fifth of world oil output.

The Guards hailed "the successful launch of ballistic missiles from the depths of the Earth in a completely camouflaged way" as an "important achievement that could pose serious challenges to enemy intelligence organizations," AFP reported.

They also said they released bombs from Sukhoi Su-22 fighter-bombers to target predetermined positions on Bani Farur Island in Iran's territorial waters.

"These launches were carried out without the platform and usual equipment," Hajizadeh said on state television.

"The buried missiles suddenly tear through the ground and hit their targets with precision," he said, adding again that this happened "for the first time in the world".

The US military said the drill caused two bases with US troops in the region to go on heightened alert and said Tehran’s missile launches were irresponsible.

According to Reuters, Tehran holds annual naval war games in phases in the strategic waterway, the conduit for some 30% of all crude and other oil liquids traded by sea.

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