Iran’s paramilitary Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) announced on Monday that it has significantly upgraded the range of its anti-warship missiles, the state-run news agency reported.
The IRGC says it now possesses surface-to-surface and subsurface anti-warship missiles with a range as high as 700 kilometers (430 miles), according to its top naval officer, Admiral Ali Reza Tangsiri.
In September, Iranian officials said the country’s most advanced anti-warship missiles had a range of about 300 kilometers, some 180 miles.
Iran periodically announces major advances in its weapons capabilities that cannot be verified independently. Its armed forces are believed to have surface-to-surface missiles with a range of 2,000 kilometers, or 1,250 miles, that can reach Israel and United States bases in the Middle East.
Tangsiri’s remarks came a day after the IRGC acknowledged its naval forces had a tense encounter with US warships in the Persian Gulf last week.
Tensions between Iran and the US remain high in the Gulf, following a year of escalating clashes between the two countries.
The US withdrew from the nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers in 2018 and reimposed crippling sanctions on Iran. Tehran views the heavy presence of US forces along the Gulf littoral as a threat.