Basij Forces Start Massive Drills in Northwestern Iran
Iran’s Basij (volunteer) force started two days of wargames in Northeastern Iran on Thursday to show its defensive preparedness against any possible threat.
“We are trying to stage in the best possible way these ‘towards Beit al-Moqaddas’ drills codenamed Ya Rasoulallah that started in Ardebil province today,” Commander of Brigade 37 of Hazrat Abbas (AS) of Ardebil province Brigadier General Farhang Mostae’ed said on Thursday.
He announced that during the wargames, the Basij forces’ combat and defensive preparedness as well as their relief and rescue skills will be tested.
Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari announced earlier this month the Armed Forces’ plan to stage 20 wargames in the current Iranian year (started on March 21).
“20 drills will be staged this year by the Armed Forces based on the schedule,” Jafari told reporters in a press conference in Tehran.
He also announced that 250,000 Iranian Basiji (volunteer) forces in the form of 250 battalions will hold massive drills this month to practice fighting against security threats.
The Iranian Armed Forces have recently test-fired different types of newly-developed missiles and torpedoes and tested a large number of home-made weapons, tools and equipment, including submarines, military ships, artillery, choppers, aircrafts, UAVs and air defense and electronic systems, during massive military drills.
Defense analysts and military observers say that Iran’s wargames and its advancements in weapons production have proved as a deterrent factor.
In a recent development, the IRGC Navy ended the massive wargames, codenamed Payambar-e Azam (The Great Prophet) 9, in the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz late February.
Speaking to reporters in the Southern Iranian port city of Bandar Abbas, Rear Admiral Fadavi said that the IRGC’s massive wargames ended after three days in Southern Iran after testing a strategic weapon.
“This new weapon plays a determining role in increasing Iran’s naval power to confront the threats, specially by the US, against the Islamic Revolution,” he said.
Different IRGC Navy vessels were used in the exercises.
On the first day of the drills, a mock aircraft carrier was destroyed by the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps missiles.
The model was built in real size and came under attack and was destroyed by missiles and rockets fired from tens of IRGC speedboats.
Also a number of the IRGC cruise and two ballistic missiles were fired at the mock US aircraft carrier.
Also during the wargames, a mobile naval target was destroyed by Fateh 110 and Zelzal missiles on a deserted island 270km away from the wargames zone.
During the first moments of the second stage of the drills, enemy drones were also hit and destroyed by Misaq shoulder-launched missiles and artilleries mounted on 100 IRGC’s speedboats.
Also, tens of IRGC vessels conducted high-speed mine-laying operations in a short period of time to get ready for critical situations in times of possible threats.
Fadavi described Iran’s “mine-laying” capability as “the most important concern of the Americans”, and said, “We have the most advanced sea mines which cannot be imagined by the Americans.”
In recent years, Iran has made great achievements in its defense sector and attained self-sufficiency in producing essential military equipment and systems.
Iranian officials have always stressed that the country’s military and arms programs serve defensive purposes and should not be perceived as a threat to any other country.