Yearender: How could Iran walk out of current difficulties?
TEHRAN, Dec. 22 (Xinhua) -- Iranian Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari on Thursday announced the upcoming launch of ten-day massive naval exercises in the international waters, the local satellite Press TV reported.
Sayyari said at a press conference on Thursday that the naval maneuvers dubbed Velayat 90 will start on Saturday and will cover an area of 2,000 (1,250-mile) km stretching from the east of the Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf to the Gulf of Aden, the report said.
This is the first time that Iran's Navy carries out naval drills in such a vast area, he was quoted as saying.
He said that the exercises will manifest Iran's military prowess and defense capabilities in the international waters, convey a message of peace and friendship to regional countries and test the newest military equipment among other objectives, said the report.
He added that the newest missile systems and torpedoes will be employed in the maneuvers, adding that the most recent tactics used in subsurface battles will also be demonstrated.
Iranian destroyers, missile-launching vessels, logistic vessels, drones and coastal missiles will also be tested, said the Iranian commander, according to the report.
Closing Strait of Hurmoz is under full control of Iran, he said but did not mention about the exercise to close it, according to the state IRIB TV website.
Earlier this month, Parviz Sorouri, a member of the Iranian Majlis (parliament) National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, said that Iran plans to practice its ability to close the Strait of Hormuz, one of the world's most important passages for exports of crude and oil products from littoral states of Persian Gulf.
Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said later that closing the Strait of Hormuz is not on Iran's agenda.
As Iran has announced it several times, the issue of closing the Strait of Hormuz is not on Iran's agenda since Iran believes in upholding the stability and peace of the region," said Mehmanparast.
Iran invites IAEA inspectors to visit its nuclear establishments
TEHRAN, Dec. 21 (Xinhua) -- Iran's permanent representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Ali-Asghar Soltanieh said that the Islamic Republic has invited IAEA inspectors to visit the country's nuclear establishments, the local satellite Press TV reported on Wednesday.
Following a formal Iranian invitation extended to the IAEA inspectors to visit the country, Tehran is prepared to address concerns on its nuclear program, Soltanieh told Press TV in an interview on Wednesday. Full story
Special Report: Iran Nuclear Crisis