Iranian supersonic missiles now undergoing tests: state media

The announcement is bound to make US-Iran tensions worse.
Loukia Papadopoulos
Representational image of Iranian missiles.jpg
Representational image of Iranian missiles.


Relations between the United States and Iran have been tense due to military deployments in the region and they are about to get worse as the Islamic nation has announced it has acquired supersonic cruise missile technology.

Undergoing testing

Al Jazeera quoted the state-linked Tasnim news website that reported on Wednesday that the missiles are now undergoing tests and “will mark the beginning of a new chapter in the defense power of our country.”

Tasnim added that the new missiles could “significantly accelerate the Islamic Republic of Iran’s response time in case of any combat, and take away attacking forces’ opportunity for reaction”.

Although the state media failed to disclose when such a missile could finish with testing and be publicly unveiled, reports of such capabilities are not entirely new.

In May of 2023, Iran unveiled a new ballistic missile with a range of 1,242 miles (2,000 km) and a payload capacity of a ton (907 kg) and confirmed plans to soon make public a hypersonic missile.

Those rumors dated from back in November of last year when the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC)'s aerospace unit, Amirali Hajizadeh, claimed that the country had developed a hypersonic missile. These claims had been met with skepticism by the US. However, in May, Hajizadeh told an Iranian news agency that the missile has passed all its tests and will soon be unveiled.

Reports at the time indicated that the missile is capable of maneuvering itself both inside and outside the atmosphere and can fly at speeds between 12-15 Mach. Under normal circumstances, any projectile that can reach speeds between Mach 1 and Mach 5 is considered supersonic.

Finally, in June of 2023, the Islamic nation announced development of its first hypersonic ballistic missile that was reportedly capable of evading radars and breaching any defense system.

High tensions

Tensions have been high between Iran and the US with the latter saying on Monday that two warships with more than 3,000 military staff have been assigned to the Red Sea to help protect shipping lanes, particularly those located in the Strait of Hormuz, from Iranian “harassment,” reported Al Jazeera.

This new presence was not well received by Iran.

“What do the Persian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman and the Indian Ocean have to do with America,” said Iranian armed forces spokesperson Brigadier-General Abolfazl Shekarchi, according to the semi-official Tasnim news agency. “What is your business being here?”

The nation responded by further equipping its IRGC forces with more drones and missiles.