Repub­lic vows to beef up army af­ter Is­rael gets aid

7 Days in Dubai - - GLOBAL NEWS -

Iran’s chief of staff of the armed forces has said a $38 bil­lion aid deal be­tween the US and Is­rael makes Iran more de­ter­mined to strengthen its mil­i­tary.

In com­ments broad­cast live on Ira­nian state TV yes­ter­day, Gen­eral Mo­ham­mad Hos­sein Bagheri said the US-Is­rael aid deal “will make us more de­ter­mined in strength­en­ing the de­fence power of the coun­try.” He spoke at an an­nual mil­i­tary pa­rade.

Last week, the US signed an un­prece­dented new se­cu­rity agree­ment with Is­rael that will give the Is­raeli mil­i­tary $38 bil­lion over 10 years.

Iran does not recog­nise Is­rael and sup­ports anti-Is­raeli mil­i­tant groups such as Pales­tinian Ha­mas and Lebanon’s Hezbol­lah.

Dur­ing a sep­a­rate pa­rade yes­ter­day in the south­ern Ira­nian port of Ban­dar Ab­bas, Iran un­veiled a new mis­sile, known as Zolfaghar.

It was car­ried by a mil­i­tary truck that bore a ban­ner printed with a 2013 an­tiIs­raeli quote by Supreme Leader Ay­a­tol­lah Ali Khamenei say­ing that Iran will an­ni­hi­late the cities of Tel Aviv and Haifa should Is­rael at­tack Iran.

Tas­nim, the semi-of­fi­cial news agency, which is close to Iran’s hard-line Rev­o­lu­tion­ary Guard, said the mis­sile is a “long range bal­lis­tic” with a clus­ter war­head. It did not pro­vide fur­ther de­tails.

The semi-of­fi­cial ISNA news agency later said the solid-fuel mis­sile had a range of 700km.

Zolfaghar is the name of the sword used by Imam Ali, a cousin of the Prophet Mo­hammed and his suc­ces­sor ac­cord­ing to Shia be­lief.

The an­nual mil­i­tary pa­rade marked the 36th an­niver­sary of the start of 1980-1988 war be­tween Iran and Iraq.

MIL­I­TARY: Troops at the 36th an­niver­sary pa­rade of the Iran and Iraq war

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