As the US has spoken of increasing its military presence in the Persian Gulf waters, Iran announced this Saturday that its Revolutionary Guards’ navy is now equipped with drones and missiles to deter any military threat.
According to reports by Iran’s state media on this Saturday, the Islamic Republic has equipped its Revolutionary Guards’ navy with explosive drones and long-range missiles to defend any potential military threat in the regional waters.
“Various types of drones … and several hundred cruise and ballistic missiles with a range of 300 to 1,000 km are among the systems and equipment that were added to the capabilities of the Guards’ navy today,” Iran’s state media said in a report Saturday morning.
Revolutionary Guards’ Navy Commander Alireza Tangsiri also explained in a statement that the new missiles “have better precision as well as longer range”, adding that “the cruise missiles can attack several targets simultaneously and the commands can be altered after take-off”.
The new phase of tensions between Washington and Tehran began last week when two US officials from the Pentagon said that the country could soon offer to put armed sailors and Marines on commercial ships in the region to protect ships from what it described as “Iran’s hostile activities”.
Accusing Iran of attempts to hijack ships in international waters, the US officials also noted that the US military had already been training some Marines in the Middle East to be on the vessels.
Since 2019, there have been a series of attacks on shipping in strategic Gulf waters at times of tension between the United States and Iran. But neither the US nor any other country or international body could ever find evidence that Iran had been behind such illegal acts.
Iran believes that the US is thousands of miles away from the Persian Gulf and should not have military presence so close to Iran borders, which seems quite logical as much part of the regional waters around the Persian Gulf is considered Iran’s territorial waters.
But regardless of Iran’s security concerns, the US has been only adding fuel to the fire of tensions with the Islamic Republic in the past few months. It was last month in July, for example, that the Pentagon sent F-35 and F-16 fighter jets along with a warship to the Middle East in a bid to monitor key waterways in the region, a move that Tehran took as a threat to its territorial waters.
The Head of the IRGC lauded the Navy’s move
Approving and appreciating the IRGC naval forces for equipping Iran’s navy in the Persian Gulf with drones and missiles, the Commander-in-Chief of the IRGC Mohammad Salami said this Sunday that the move was necessary for the protection of Iran’s national interests and sea borders from military threats.
Describing the US military deployments to the region as foreign intervention, Salami said such US moves “provided us with opportunities that helped the Iranian military forces hone their skills and draw up a comprehensive plan to build up strength to overcome the foes”.
Salami also noted that Iran is now a major actor in the geometry of power in the region and the world, and that Iran’s power and sphere of influence have been recognized by the world.
Last year, Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Hossein Baqeri said Iran “is now so highly advanced in the defense industry that major world powers want us to share our knowledge and achievements with them”.