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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran successfully tests long-range missile

RIA Novosti

12:43 16/12/2009 MOSCOW, December 16 (RIA Novosti) - Iran has successfully tested an upgraded version of its long range solid-fuel Sejil-2 missile, state television reported.

Iran's Arabic-language satellite television Al Alam said the test was part of Iran's long-term plans to defend its borders.

The missile has a longer range than the Shahab missile and is capable of hitting targets 2,000 kilometers (1,250 miles) away, meaning Israel and even parts of southeastern Europe within reach.

Experts said the test could increase tensions with the West over Iran's nuclear program.

Iran frequently holds military drills and shows off modern weaponry in an effort to demonstrate its readiness to thwart any attack against its nuclear facilities.

The West suspects Iran of pursuing a secret nuclear weapons program, but the Islamic Republic says it needs nuclear power solely for civilian purposes.

The United States and Israel have not ruled out taking military action against Iran to stop it from obtaining nuclear weapons.

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