Publishe Date: 12:11 PM - 11/23/2014 | Print

Navy Commander: Iran Able to Build Aircraft Carrier

Politics - Iran is capable of building aircraft carriers and heavy submarines, Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari said, announcing the country's plans to extend its presence in the international waters.

"As we have managed to produce warships and submarines, we also have the capability to build aircraft carriers and heavy submarines," Sayyari said in an interview with the state-run news agency on Sunday.

He underlined that building aircraft carriers and heavy submarines can be started upon a relevant decision by high-ranking Iranian officials.

Elsewhere, Sayyari referred to the deployment of the Iranian naval forces in the high seas, and said, "Free waters belong to all nations and therefore, we are after extending our presence in these free waters based on our legal right."

He said that the Iranian Navy plans to dispatch forces to the Atlantic Ocean after their successful presence in the Northern parts of the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden to fight piracy in recent years.

Tehran launched an arms development program during the 1980-88 Iraqi imposed war on Iran to compensate for a US weapons embargo. Since 1992, Iran has produced its own tanks, armored personnel carriers, missiles and fighter planes.

Yet, Iranian officials have always stressed that the country's military and arms programs serve defensive purposes and should not be perceived as a threat to any other country.

Iran in June 2013 launched its overhauled and modernized destroyer named Bayandor in the Southern waters of the country in the presence of Army Commander Major General Ataollah Salehi and Rear Admiral Sayyari.

Army officials said the Iranian Navy's power of safeguarding the country's territorial waters as well as maintaining security in regional and international waters will increase after the launch of Bayandor.

Overhauling the main engines, heat exchangers and fuel and oil systems as well as optimizing the monitoring control systems are among the measures adopted before launching the destroyer.

Navy experts have also mounted a fire control system for the destroyer's weapons, a 76-mm and a 40-mm canons and a surface-to-surface Nour (Light) missile system on the destroyer.

In May 2013, Sayyari had declared that Iran could use the destroyer to carry out missions in international waters in the future.

He said the destroyer is fitted with state-of-the-art equipment such as missile, torpedo, artillery, sonar and other information and communication systems.

In recent years, Iran has made great achievements in its defense sector and attained self-sufficiency in producing essential military equipment and systems.

Iran's first home-made destroyer, Jamaran, was launched in late February 2010. The Mowdge Class vessel has a displacement of around 14,000 tons and is equipped with modern radars and electronic warfare capabilities and is armed with a variety of anti-ship, surface-to-surface and surface-to-air missiles.

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