World / Middle East

Iran launches submarine, destroyer

(Xinhua) Updated: 2012-09-19 09:56

TEHRAN - Iran's Navy launched the overhauled super-heavy submarine and indigenous destroyer on Tuesday as the United States and its allies continued military drills in the Persian Gulf for the third day.

The super-heavy Tareq 901 submarine repaired by Iranian experts and Sahand destroyer were successfully launched in Iran's southern port of Bandar Abbas, Press TV reported.

Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said Tuesday that Iran is monitoring every move in the Persian Gulf "carefully".

Making the remarks in his weekly press briefing, Mehmanparast referred to the ongoing military drill of the United States and its allies in the Persian Gulf, and said the security and stability of the Persian Gulf is of "high priority" for Iran and the country will confront any measure that causes instability and insecurity in the region.

"Iran has emphasized that the root cause of insecurity in the region is the military presence of foreigners and Westerners," he said.

With respect to the defensive power of the regional countries and the cooperation and convergence among them, there is no need for foreigners in the region, Mehmanparast said, adding that powerful states of the region are able to establish stability and security in collaboration.

The United States and about 25 of its allies started Sunday the largest-scale mine-sweeping exercise in the Persian Gulf, in a show of unity and defensive step to prevent Iran from attempting to block oil exports through the Strait of Hormuz.

Iranian military officials have threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz in the face of mounting western sanction pressures.

In August, Iran's defense minister has said that his ministry plans to produce a variety of fighter jets, missiles, drones, submarines and military vehicles by the end of the Iranian calendar year (started on March 20, 2012).

The West suspects Iran of attempting to produce a nuclear warhead under cover of its nuclear program, while Iran says its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.

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