Iran test fires Qiam missile: minister

Defence Minister Ahmad Vahidi said on Friday that Iran has test fired a surface-to-surface missile, Qiam, while footage of the event was screened on state television.

Vahidi’s announcement comes a day before Iran is scheduled to launch its Russian-built first nuclear power plant in the southern port city of Bushehr.

The television images showed the sand coloured Qiam (Rising) blasting into the air from a desert terrain, amid chants of “Allahu Akbar” (God is greatest).

The words “Ya Mahdi” were written on the side of the missile, referring to Imam Mahdi.

Vahidi, who was speaking during Friday prayers in Tehran, did not say when the launch took place nor did he reveal the precise range of the missile.

“The missile has new technical aspects and has a unique tactical capacity,” he said on state television, adding that the device was of a “new class.”

“Since the surface-to-surface missile has no wings, it has lot of tactical power, which also reduces the chances of it being intercepted,” he said.

On Saturday, Iran is launching its Russian-built first nuclear power plant which eventually aims to generate electricity.

The plant is scheduled to go online after more than three decades of delays.