Iran on Saturday unveiled a new surface-to-surface ballistic missile with a 500-kilometer (310 miles) range, saying military might was a precondition for peace and effective diplomacy.
The Fateh 313 missile was unveiled during a ceremony marking the anniversary of Iran’s military industry, attended by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
The military industry called the solid-fuel missile one of the most exact ever manufactured, boasting that it has successfully hit multiple targets with great precision, Israel’s Walla website reported.
“We will buy, sell and develop any weapons we need and we will not ask for permission or abide by any resolution for that,” Rouhani said in a speech at the ceremony, which was broadcast live on state television, according to Reuters.
“We can negotiate with other countries only when we are powerful. If a country does not have power and independence, it cannot seek real peace,” the president said.
A senior commander in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said Friday that the country is planning massive “ballistic missiles war games,” adding that the announcement comes after Tehran said it plans to begin phasing in a new generation of missiles.
“The IRGC Aerospace Force will hold a large-scale ballistic missiles war-games soon,” Brigadier Gen. Amirali Hajizadeh said, according to the state-run Fars news agency.
Tehran said last month that its ballistic missile program was not connected to the UN Security Council resolution endorsing the July 14 accord with world powers that limits its nuclear program.
Under the terms of the agreement, Iran is barred from developing ballistic missiles capable of carrying a nuclear warhead.
Iran says it has ballistic missiles with a range of 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles), which are capable of striking both Israel and Saudi Arabia. But the Foreign Ministry said that the UN’s resolution endorsing the deal did not have jurisdiction over its missile development.
“Iran’s military capacities, especially ballistic missiles, are strictly defensive and, as they have not been conceived to carry nuclear weapons, they are outside the scope and competence of the Security Council resolution,” the ministry wrote in a statement.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran is committed to implementing its commitments… so long as world powers keep their side of the agreement to lift sanctions in exchange for guarantees that Tehran will not develop a nuclear program,” the statement said.