Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has unveiled a locally built Bavar-373 air-defence system into the country’s missile defence network at an unveiling ceremony in the capital, Tehran.
The display of the new system, on Tuesday came amid heightened tensions with the United States, which last year unilaterally withdrew from a multinational nuclear deal signed between world powers and Iran and reimposed crippling sanctions on it.
Iranian officials have previously called Bavar, which means “believe” in Farsi, the country’s first domestically produced long-range missile defence system.
Iran began production after the purchase of Russia’s S-300 system was suspended in 2010 due to international sanctions that have barred it from importing many weapons. It installed the stalled S-300 system in March 2016 following several years of delays in the wake of the now-crumbling 2015 nuclear deal.
Speaking at the ceremony, Rouhani said the mobile surface-to-air system was “better than S-300 and close to [more advanced] S-400.”
With a range of more than 200km, Iran’s official IRNA news agency said the long-range missile system is suited to the country’s geography.