Iran Claims to Launch Long-Range Missile
Ahmadinejad reports new test of arms that could reach Israel
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 20, 2009 6:43 AM CDT
A missile prior to test firing by Iranian armed forces is seen in an undisclosed location.   (AP Photo/Fars News Agency, Vahid Reza Alaei)
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(Newser) – Iran test-fired a new advanced missile today with a range of about 1,200 miles, far enough to strike Israel and southeastern Europe, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad claims. The reported launch comes two days after Barack Obama said he would seek deeper international sanctions against Iran if it shunned US attempts to open negotiations on its nuclear program, reports the AP. "It landed precisely on the target," said the Iranian president.

Ahmadinejad is running for re-election in next month's vote and has been criticized for antagonizing the US and mismanaging the country's faltering economy. Today's reported launch was of a solid-fuel surface-to-surface missile, which Iran said it had successfully tested late last year. Most Western analysts believe Iran does not yet have the technology to produce nuclear weapons, including warheads for long-range missiles.