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Iranian Navy to receive high-tech drones as part of weapons upgrade – commander

Iranian Navy to receive high-tech drones as part of weapons upgrade – commander
Iran will soon be armed with sophisticated unmanned aerial vehicles that can be launched from its warships, the country’s navy commander has said. The announcement comes amid rising tensions in the Persian Gulf.

The Islamic Republic has successfully tested the second prototype of its first jet-powered drone, Sejjil, according Rear Admiral Hossein Khanzadi.

The twin-engine aircraft has a top flying speed of 1,000kph and is able to bomb targets at a range of 100km (62 miles), the commander said. The whale-shaped Sejjil is designed to be launched from the deck of Iranian warships and uses a parachute to land in the water after completing its mission.

Another drone expected to be deployed soon, ‘Simorgh’, can remain in the air for 24 hours while carrying weapons, electronic warfare systems and reconnaissance gear.

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The current limitations of Iranian’s drone fleet will “fade away” once the new unmanned aerial vehicles enter commission, Khanzadi vowed, according to Iranian state media.

The new hardware is part of Tehran’s efforts to upgrade its naval forces amid growing unease in the waterways off Iran’s coast.

A US-led maritime force is currently patrolling the Strait of Hormuz, purportedly in an effort to protect commercial tankers. Tehran has denounced the move as leading to further insecurity in the region.

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