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Iran sets up command to guard nuclear sites
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Iran is working to home in on its military anti-aircraft command, amid threats of an Israeli air strike on the country's nuclear sites.

Air Force Chief Brigadier General Ahmad Miqani said Saturday that the Iranian military has been ordered by the country's Commander-in-Chief Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei to set up a new Anti-Aircraft Command.

The command will deal with anti-aircraft warfare, or air defense which entails engaging hostile military aircraft in defense of ground objectives, and is also used to prevent unauthorized aircraft from entering the country's airspace.

The move will bring all anti-aircraft systems belonging to the military and the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) including radar equipment, surveillance and intelligence gathering devices, long-, mid- and short-range missiles and defense systems under the newly-established command.

The Iranian commander added that the move "aims to enhance and expand combat capabilities of the country's air defense unit."

"To counter the enemy's advanced military equipment, we [Iran] should be equipped with state-of-the-art air defense technology," explained Brig. Gen. Miqani, adding that Iran is working its way to assembling the required anti-aircraft artillery.

The new structural arrangements in the Iranian military comes as the newly-appointed head of US intelligence predicted that Israel and Iran would engage in a major military confrontation before the end of the year.

In a report to the Senate Intelligence Committee on the potential threats as foreseen by the 16 intelligence agencies in the United States, Dennis Blair said Tel Aviv would eventually declare war on Tehran as a last-ditch effort to curb Iran's enrichment capabilities.

The prediction by the US intelligence official came in line with remarks in a Friday interview by former Israeli UN ambassador Dan Gillerman revealing that Israel is preparing a military offensive against Iran.

"Israel has both the responsibility to defend itself and the capacity to defend itself, and I am sure that when the time comes and all other options have been exhausted, Israel will act in the only way it must to protect its people," said Gillerman.

Iran's Defense Ministry announced earlier on Wednesday that it had built a long-range anti-aircraft system capable of simultaneously striking multiple enemy targets.

"This long-range anti-aircraft system can identify and track multiple targets and is capable of simultaneously destroying them from a long distance," Brigadier General Mohammad-Najjar said at the Islamic Revolution's military achievements exhibition.

The newly-built Iranian missile, which calls to mind the controversial Russian S-300 surface-to-air missile defense system, is believed to have been built in order to shield Iran's nuclear facilities from an Israeli go-it-alone air strike.


Source >  PressTV | Feb 14

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