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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Photos: Iran's Revolutionary Guards Unveil New 'Smart' Drone Submarine, Faster Speedboats

Sputnik News


Iran's fleet of submarines and so-called "midget subs" are currently operated by the Iranian Navy, not by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), meaning the drone submarine revealed on Tuesday is a new foray into subsurface operations for the force.

The IRGC unveiled several new weapons on Tuesday, including its first drone submarine, described as a "smart submarine" in a broadcast carried by state television.

An unveiling ceremony took place in Iran's southern port of Bandar Abbas, which sits at the center of the Hormuz Strait, the strategic entrance to the Persian Gulf. It was observed by IRGC Commander Maj. Gen. Hossein Salami and IRGC Navy Chief Rear Adm. Ali Reza Tangsiri, according to the Tasnim News Agency.

Also unveiled at the event were new fast attack water craft boasting a top speed of 95 knots and the capability of firing missiles and rockets, as well as carrying out reconnaissance missions. The IRGC operates a massive speed boat flotilla of thousands of boats, which it uses to exercise control over its extensive coastline and would likely use to wage a form of asymmetric naval warfare in the event of any conflict.

The IRGC also revealed that it has new missiles with a longer range and better ability to withstand electronic interference.

Iranian media gave no indication of how the new drone submarine would be used. Various other nations use unmanned submarines for everything from reconnaissance to combat, including the United States, Russia and China.

The IRGC is an elite paramilitary formation that complements the Iranian military. The US has designated the group a foreign terrorist organization, despite the IRGC never having been linked to a terrorist attack.

In January 2020, the US under the Trump administration assassinated its commander, Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, in a drone strike outside of Baghdad, Iraq. The Trump White House claimed Soleimani was there to coordinate attacks on several US embassies, but the Iraqi government later revealed that the military commander was on a secretive mission aimed at healing relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

© Sputnik

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