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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iranian Navy to Receive Pair of Destroyers Soon, Commander Promises

Sputnik News

20220501
Ilya Tsukanov

Iran's maritime forces are divided into two branches - the Islamic Republic of Iran Navy and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' naval forces. In addition to coastal defence, the Navy is tasked with missions on the high seas. Last year, the branch showed off its blue water capabilities by sailing a pair of warships on a round-the-world journey.

Iran will soon receive the Zagros and the Damavand-2 - a pair of "new-generation", domestically developed and produced destroyers, Navy commander Shahram Irani has announced.

Speaking to the Islamic Republic of Iran News Network on Friday, the rear admiral said the warships would be commissioned at a special ceremony, but did not offer any further details.

The commander said that the warships are currently undergoing "rigorous tests", with "the accumulated technical information" transferred to the Navy's technical and industrial departments. He also indicated that unspecified "cutting-edge technology" has been incorporated into both ships.

Irani further revealed that the Islamic Republic would soon begin the production of "heavy destroyers" after completing the necessary research.

The Navy commander boasted that the Islamic Republic has "annoyed" the United States by building up the technologies to domestically and independently design and produce advanced destroyers and submarines and to operate them on the open seas.

The last Iranian destroyer to be commissioned was the Dena - a Moudge-class (lit. "Wave-class") warship that's internationally classed as a frigate. The warship was delivered in June 2021 at a ceremony in Bandar Abbas, joining the Jamaran and the Sahand - vessels of the same class already in operation.

The 95-metre-long, 1,500 tonne displacement destroyers are equipped with domestically created countermeasures and 3D PESA radar systems, a 76mm main gun, close-in cannons and machine guns, Mehrab surface-to-air missiles, and Noor or Qader anti-ship missiles, as well as 324mm torpedoes. A Bell 214 anti-submarine warfare chopper can also be deployed on board the vessel thanks to the helicopter deck on its stern.

The Moudge-class Damavand, named after Mount Damavand - a significant mountain in Persian mythology, was commissioned with the Navy in 2015, but was lost during a storm off Bandar-e Anzali in north-western Iran in 2018. The ship was recovered, and is currently being refitted.

Irani did not offer any details on the Damavand-2 or the Zagros - the latter warship presumably named after the mountain range of the same name in southern Iran, and whether are Moudge-class warships, or a new development. At least three other Moudge-class destroyers are under construction - the Shiraz, the Taftan, and the Talayieh.

The Moudge-class proved its endurance mettle last year, when the Sahand and Makran - a support vessel built from a converted oil tanker, set sail through the Indian Ocean, the Atlantic, through the English Channel and the Baltic Sea to St. Petersburg, Russia to take part in a naval parade. Along the route, the mini flotilla caused significant consternation for the Pentagon, which initially assumed that the ships were loaded with weapons and heading for Venezuela.

Iranian officials have expressed an interest in building additional Makran-style support ships, with the design lauded for its cost-effectiveness, and the ability to serve as a ro-ro (roll on-roll off) platform for Iranian missile designs such as the Sevom Khordad road-mobile medium-range air defence system - which can literally just be parked on its deck and sent to sea.

© Sputnik



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