Iran’s Navy commander says the force plans to build nuclear-powered submarines capable of operating in international waters for long periods of time amid the growing threats facing the country from the sea.
Rear Admiral Hossein Khanzadi on Thursday highlighted the capabilities of submarines powered by nuclear reactors compared to the conventional models, saying nuclear propulsion enables the watercraft to stay at high seas for months and rids it of the need for frequent refueling.
He said the plan is in line with the country’s defensive agenda, adding that many countries, including the US, are using nuclear-powered submarines.
“It would be negligence on the part of Iran if it fails to consider using submarines with nuclear propulsion,” he said. “Therefore, we are thinking about its.”
“This domestic capability exists at the Defense Ministry regarding the production of submarines larger than Fateh and certainly, the developing of submarine propulsion is on the Navy’s agenda,” he added.
Fateh (Conqueror) is an Iranian designed class of semi-heavy submarines that can operate for five weeks at a submerged depth of 200 meters.
The near 600-tonne vessel is equipped with torpedoes and naval mines in addition to cruise missiles.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Khanzadi stressed that Iran’s stance on the nuclear energy is clear and that Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has on many occasions highlighted the peaceful nature of the country’s nuclear activities.
In addition, he added, Iran requires the peaceful nuclear program given multiple threats around the country.
The commander said Iran is entitled to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes as per international conventions.
The Armed Forces need equipment to maintain peace and security, the Iranian navy chief said, noting, however, that “peace would not be consolidated if there is no deterrence and preparedness for defense.”