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Iran to manufacture missiles and launchers

Iran two-stage solid-fueled Ashura missile. A file photo

JERUSALEM (BNS): Iran is in the midst of a multi-year plan and hopes for the production of several hundred missile launchers and over 1,000 long-range ballistic missiles within the next six years, according to estimates in the Israeli defense establishment.

Teheran is believed to currently have an arsenal of 100-200 long-range Shihab missiles that have a range of up to 2,000 kilometers and carry up to one-ton warheads.

The Iranians last year test-fired a missile called Ashura believed to have recently entered production, the goal being to eventually replace the Shihab.

The Ashura is a solid-fuel missile with a range of 2,000 kilometeres(1,240 miles), giving it a long shelf-life. Unlike the Shihab, it does not need to be fueled shortly before launching.

"The Iranians are making great efforts to obtain a significant number of missiles, they already talk about how one of the ways they will overcome the missile defense systems is by firing salvos of missiles." said Tal Inbar, head of the Space Research Center at the Fisher Brothers Institute in Herzliya to a foreign newspaper.

Iran would manufacture trucks carrying hydraulic launchers and use them as portable launchers capable of firing from anywhere in the country.

The country also plans to obtain 500 missile launchers and over 1,000 missiles with a range of 2,500 km. by 2015.

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