Saturday, November 29, 2008

Naval Commander Confirms Launch of New Boats

Iranian Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari confirmed this morning the launch of two new missile boats, Kalat (Fortress) and Derafsh (Flag) as well as a Ghadir-class light submarine on Thursday 27 November (Iran’s Navy Day.)

In an exclusive interview with Iran’s official news agency IRNA, RDML Sayyari also challenged assertions by NATO’s naval commander that Iranian threats to close the Strait of Hormuz were a “fantasy.” Vice Admiral Maurizio Gemignani had made the remark during his visit to Kuwait on 4 November.

“We can close Hormuz. You don’t believe it, bring it on!” Sayyari said in response to Gemignani [IRNA, 29 November].

The missile boats and the Ghadir-class sub were manufactured by Iran Navy and Defense Industry Organization. Iranian Navy will hold military exercises in the Sea of Oman earlier next month (5-20 December). The upcoming exercises are codenamed Ettehad-87 [Unity-08].

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