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Iran test-fires missiles amid nuclear debate

world Updated: Sep 27, 2009 22:59 IST

Iran test-fired three short-range missiles on Sunday as the Islamic republic began war games two days after the UN nuclear watchdog disclosed it was building a second uranium enrichment plant.

Hossein Salami, air force commander of the elite Revolutionary Guards, said that Monday would also see a test-firing of a long-range missile which Iran says has a range of 1,300-2,000 kilometres (800-1,240 miles) and is capable of hitting arch-foe Israel.

“Tomorrow we will test the long-range Shahab-3 missile,” he told state television.

He also told reporters, without elaborating, that the Guards tested a “multiple missile launcher for the first time” on Sunday and that later in the day Shahab-1 and Shahab-2 medium-range missiles would be test-fired.

Iran’s Fars news agency said the multiple launcher could fire two missiles aimed at separate targets simultaneously.

Salami said Iran was also now capable of firing missiles from mobile launchers, and called the manoeuvres an “indication” of Iran’s “strong will to defend our values and interests.