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Last Updated: Wednesday, 11 August, 2004, 14:42 GMT 15:42 UK
Iran upgrades anti-Israel missile
The Iranian president watches a missile parade in Teheran
Iran claims its missiles are only for deterrent purposes
Iran has tested an upgraded version of a medium-range missile in response to Israel's latest tests on its anti-missile technology.

The Shahab-3 missile is thought to have a range of 810 miles, with the potential to strike anywhere in Israel.

Iran claims its missile programme should work as a deterrent, and that no nuclear warheads are being developed.

Iranian officials have said the country would strike back strongly if Israel tried to hit its nuclear facilities.

The test was carried out "to assess the latest developments implemented on this missile," a defence ministry spokesman said in a TV report

The Iranian Defence Minister, Ali Shamkhani, announced the imminent test last week, but denied that Iran was building a new, more advanced Shahab-4 missile.

"The Israelis are trying hard to improve the capacity of their missiles, and we are also trying to improve the Shahab-3 in a short time," he said.

The Shahab, meaning "meteor" in Farsi, is believed to be based on Pakistani and North Korean technology.




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