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Iran Fires Nine Missiles Into Persian Gulf

From a joyous Associated Press:


Iran test-fires missiles in Persian Gulf

By ALI AKBAR DAREINI, Associated Press Writer

TEHRAN, Iran – Iran test-fired nine long- and medium-range missiles Wednesday during war games that officials said aimed to show the country can retaliate against any U.S. or Israeli attack, state television reported.

Oil prices jumped on news of the missile tests, rising US$1.44 to US$137.48 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

The military exercise was being conducted at the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic waterway at the mouth of the Persian Gulf through which about 40 percent of the world’s oil passes. Iran has threatened to shut down traffic in the strait if attacked. It was not clear, however, whether the missile test also took place near the strait.

Gen. Hossein Salami, the air force commander of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards, said the exercise would "demonstrate our resolve and might against enemies who in recent weeks have threatened Iran with harsh language," the TV report said.

Footage showed at least six missiles firing simultaneously, and said the barrage included a new version of the Shahab-3 missile, which officials have said has a range of 1,250 miles (2,000 kilometers) and is armed with a 1-ton conventional warhead. The television report did not specify where the launch took place.

That would put Israel, Turkey, the Arabian peninsula, Afghanistan and Pakistan within striking distance.

"Our hands are always on the trigger and our missiles are ready for launch," the official IRNA news agency quoted Salami as saying Wednesday.

The report comes less than a day after Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dismissed fears that Israel and the United States could be preparing to attack his country, calling the possibility a "funny joke."

"I assure you that there won’t be any war in the future," Ahmadinejad told a news conference Tuesday during a visit to Malaysia for a summit of developing Muslim nations…

We need to talk to the Iranians. And assure them we don’t mean them any harm.

That will solve everything.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, July 9th, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

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