Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) published photos of a new underground missile base on the coast of the Persian Gulf on Friday, amid increasing tensions between the Islamic Republic and the US.
“The base is one of several bases housing the Guards’ Navy’s strategic missiles,” state media quoted IRGC Chief Commander Hossein Salami, regarding the base located somewhere in the province of Hormozgan.
“Our logic in defending the territorial integrity, the independence of the country, and the achievements of the Islamic Revolution is strengthening,” Salami said, according to the national newspaper Mehr News.
Strengthened defensive capabilities
The commander also boasted that the new Naval Missile Facility held long-range missiles with pin-point precision and “huge destructive power.”
Salami claimed that the base would strengthen Iran’s defensive capabilities, especially against “the enemy’s electronic warfare equipment.”
Rising tensions between the Islamic Republic and the US came to a head on Monday when Revolutionary Guards seized a South Korean tanker in the straits of Hormuz.
The relations between the two sides were put under extra strain after President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the 2015 nuclear deal and reimposed heavy sanctions on the country.
Open hostilities almost broke out in January 2020 after the assassination of Iran’s top general Qassim Soleimani by a US drone strike in Iraq.
Top Iranian lawmakers have shown a willingness to return to negotiations with President-elect Joe Biden, however, the country’s powerful conservative establishment has continued to stoke the flames with a promise to ramp up uranium enrichment.
A warning to Iran’s enemies
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei also spoke on Friday in a live television broadcast praising the country’s defensive capabilities.
He claimed that with the ability to shoot down drones and hit the US Ain al-Assad air force base in Iraq — in response to Soleimani’s death — the country’s foes would have to take into account Iran’s ability to militarily defend itself.
The Persian Gulf has been a repeated zone of conflict between the US and the Islamic Republic
The IRGC said last year that they had built underground “missile cities” along the Gulf coastline, warning of a “nightmare for Iran’s enemies.”
Salami praised the developments of Iran’s defense systems highlighting the “great progress at the level of target intelligence systems, search systems, as well as missile radar systems.”