Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Fourth Iranian naval base opened in Persian Gulf

From Fars News Agency:
The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) has upgraded a naval base on Iran's Persian Gulf coastline to improve its defensive capabilities.

It is the fourth in a string of IRGC bases along the waterway. IRGC was put in charge of defending Iran's Persian Gulf coast in September.

The new base is in the port of Assalouyeh in Iran's southern Bushehr province. It will control a 190-mile (300-kilometer) stretch of coastline west of the strait between Kish Island and the port of Dayyer.

IRGC's Navy Commander Rear Admiral Morteza Saffari said here [Tehran] on Monday that the US Navy Fifth Fleet and other foreign naval forces were operating near the Sarrallah naval base, which he said was near Assalouyeh on the Persian Gulf coast.

"Therefore, it was necessary to upgrade Sarrallah naval base ... to increase our military capability in case of any instability caused by foreigners in the Persian Gulf," Saffari.

The General also said that the naval base of Assalouyeh would undertake the upgraded "regional" missions in the naval region of "Sarrallah" in "Persian Gulf" to encounter the current threats.

"The naval force of IRGC is ready to face and repel any kind of threat in Persian Gulf," he said, "And their capabilities to confront any possible threat by enemies in the Persian Gulf are increasing day by day."

Iran recently started constructing new naval bases along the coasts of the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman for an impenetrable line of defense.

The new bases are supposed to extend from Bandar Abbas, a major Iranian seaport on the Strait of Hormuz, to Pasa Bandar near the Pakistan border, Iran's Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari said in October.

"The new mission of the navy is to establish an impenetrable line of defense at the entrance to the Sea of Oman," Sayyari said, adding that the new bases would be constructed rapidly.

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