The commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Navy of Iran recounts the numerous feats that have been achieved by the force in line with Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei's call on it to expand its maritime presence.
The Navy embarked on equipping itself with oceangoing vessels "following the Leader's call on the IRGC to establish a presence in distant and oceanic waters," Rear Admiral Alireza Tangsiri told a televised interview on Thursday.
"We now possess three oceangoing vessels, named Shahid (Martyr) Roudaki, Shahid Mahdavi, and Shahid Bahman Baqeri," the commander added.
He described the Shahid Mahdavi vessel as a "mobile naval base" equipped with four 350-kilometer (217-mile)-range missiles. The vessel can also be outfitted with 750-kilometer (466-mile)-range missiles, and can carry three helicopters, the commander added.
The Shahid Bahman Baqeri vessel enjoys a 180-meter-long landing strip that can be used by unmanned aerial vehicles, he noted, saying the vessel can carry as many as 30 Ashura-class speedboats.
According to the official, the boats and the country's Tareq-class speedboats are "soon" to be outfitted with respectively 12-kilometer (7-mile)-range and 180-kilometer (111-mile)-range missiles.
'IRGC Navy awaits another oceangoing vessel'
"In the near future," the IRGC Navy would be equipped with another oceangoing vessel, Tangsiri said.
The official named the ship in question as the Shahid Hassan Baqeri patrol combat vessel, describing it as the second vessel of the Shahid Soleimani class to join the Navy.
In September, Iran unveiled the first vessel of the class that has been named after the country’s top anti-terror commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, who was assassinated in a US drone strike near Baghdad airport in January 2020.
According to Tangsiri, the second ship would have a 5,000 nautical mile combat radius, and would be the first-ever domestically-manufactured ship that can be outfitted with Navvab and Sayyad (Hunter) missiles. The missiles use a vertical launching system (VLS) and can fly as far as 150 kilometers (93 miles).
Hailing the IRGC Navy's other achievements, the commander said as many as 650 new vessels joined the force within the space of just three years.
The naval force's new vessels can sail at the speed of 75-90 nautical miles, he said, announcing that the force was to be joined by more vessels in the future that can sail as fast as 110 nautical miles. "This is while Americans are in possession of vessels that can travel [only] as fast as 30 nautical miles," said the commander.
"Our vessels are made of carbon and are radar evasive," Tangsiri stated, and announced that the IRGC Navy was to be joined by as many as 90 more rocket and missile cruisers throughout the coming weeks.
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