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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Starts 6-Day Naval Drills

RIA Novosti

13:53 28/12/2012

MOSCOW, December 28 (RIA Novosti) - The Iranian Navy launched six-day naval exercises on Friday in the Strait of Hormuz rehearsing border protection and piracy control operations, the Irna news agency reported.

The drills, dubbed Velayat 91, will be carried out in the Strait of Hormuz, the Sea of Oman, north of the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Aden and the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait, Navy commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari said.

The aim of the drill is to "convey a message of peace and friendship to neighboring states," Sayyari said. Velayat 91 also sends a message to Iran's enemies that the country takes defending its vital interests very seriously, he added.

During the drills, Iran's 23rd Fleet, comprised of the Bushehr warship and the Jamaran destroyer, will escort Iran's merchant vessels and oil tankers as part of the navy's anti-piracy mission.

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