Rouhani: Talks with ‘bully’ useless
Iran unveiled a new homegrown air defense system on Thursday as the Islamic Republic marked its National Defense Industry Day.
Bavar-373 is Iran’s first domestically produced long-range missile defense system designed to intercept and destroy incoming hostile targets. It uses missiles that have a maximum range of 300 kilometers.
Iran began making Bavar – which means "belief" – after the purchase of Russia's S-300 system was suspended in 2010 due to international sanctions.
President Hassan Rouhani attended the unveiling ceremony for the mobile surface-to-air system and ordered it to be added to Iran's missile defense network.
Rouhani said the system “is more powerful than S-300 and is in fact closer to [Russian] S-400,” an upgrade of Russia’s S-300 family.
The long-range Bavar-373 missile system is suited to Iran's geography and competes with Russian and American systems such as S-300 and Patriot.
It can simultaneously detect up to 300 targets, track 60 targets at once and engage six targets at a time.
According to Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami, “With this long-range air defense system, we can detect ... targets or planes at more than 300 kilometers, lock it at about 250 kilometers, and destroy it at 200 kilometers.”
He said that Iran has managed to produce “effective systems not only to counter aerial threats at…low, medium and high altitudes, but also to detect, track and destroy radar-evading aircraft and missiles from a safe distance.”
On Iran’s missile program, Hatami said, “We focus on the effectiveness of missiles through increasing precision, maneuverability, speed and conventional explosive power to overcome the enemy’s defense systems,” said Hatami.
Hatami reiterated that the projectiles are not designed to carry nuclear warheads, adding that Iran’s defense doctrine is merely based on deterrence.
“According to the strategic decision of the Islamic Republic of Iran based on the important and historical fatwas (religious decrees) of Leader of the Islamic Revolution [Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei] in the field of missiles, we have not designed any missiles with unconventional warheads,” he said.
The system — which is compatible with the Sayyad family of missiles — is also equipped with four vertical launching systems (VLS) capable of hot launching missiles.
Bavar-373 has two search and intercept radars, which can resist electronic warfare and electromagnetic bombs. In addition, the radars are capable of detecting anti-radiation missiles (ARM) that are used to confront air defenses.
Iran installed the S-300 system in March 2016 following several years of delays, after a nuclear agreement reached with world powers the previous year allowed the lifting of international sanctions.
Since 1992, Iran has developed a homegrown defense industry that has produced light and heavy weapons ranging from mortars and torpedoes to tanks and submarines.
Thursday's unveiling takes place against a backdrop of rising tensions with the United States since President Donald Trump last year in May withdrew his country from the nuclear deal and reimposed sanctions.
Iran shot down a US Global Hawk spy drone with a surface-to-air missile in June for violating its airspace, which the United States denies.
Rouhani hailed Iran’s defense achievements, adding that the US pressure campaign against the Iranian nation over the past years has only backfired and pave the way for the Islamic Republic to make further progress.
He lashed at the US for withdrawing from the 2015 nuclear deal.
“Leaving the JCPOA means breaking the international law and regulations and [waging] economic terrorism,” he said, using an acronym for the official name of the accord, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
The Americans wrongly imagined that they could force Iran to surrender by trampling on international rules and piling up economic pressure on the Islamic Republic.
Rouhani, however, reaffirmed that Iran would never surrender to bullying, and that the US excessive demands from the region will lead nowhere.
“There is no doubt that the US has not succeeded and will not succeed in any plot in the region,” said the president, adding that the Americans would “be the first to flee” if any danger is posed to the region.
Talks ‘won’t work’
Rouhani also said that talks with the US are “useless" and that “the negotiation table does not work” when dealing with bullies.
"Now that our enemies do not accept logic, we cannot respond with logic," Rouhani said.
He said: “When the enemy launches a missile against us, we cannot give a speech and say: 'Mr. Rocket, please do not hit our country and our innocent people. Rocket-launching sir, if you can please hit a button and self-destroy the missile in the air.'"
Press TV, AFP and AP contributed to this story.