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News Link • Iran

Iran says test-fires missiles over threats of attack

•, By Marcus George
 Israel says it could attack Iran if diplomacy fails to force it to halt its disputed nuclear energy program. The United States also has military force as a possible option but U.S. officials have repeatedly encouraged the Israelis to be patient while new economic sanctions are implemented against Iran. 

The Islamic Republic announced the "Great Prophet 7" missile exercise on Sunday after a European embargo against Iranian crude oil purchases took full effect following another fruitless round of big power talks with Tehran.

  Iran's official English-language Press TV said the Shahab 3 missile with a range of 1,300 km (800 miles) - able to reach Israel - was tested along with the shorter-range Shahab 1 and 2 and other missile classes. 

"The main aim of this drill is to demonstrate the Iranian nation's political resolve to defend vital values and national interests," Revolutionary Guards Deputy Commander Hossein Salami was quoted by Press TV as saying.

  He said the tests were in response to Iran's enemies who talk of a "military option being on the table".

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