Iran war games: Boats destroy mock-up US ship

Updated 26 February 2015

Iran war games: Boats destroy mock-up US ship

BEIRUT: Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards staged war games in the Strait of Hormuz on Wednesday, including a gunboat attack on a model US warship, in Tehran’s latest display of military muscle in a Gulf shipping channel vital to world oil exports.
A ceremony marking the exercises was attended by commanders of the Guards, an influential military force led by anti-Western hawks, as well as by Parliament speaker Ali Larijani.
“With attention to the situation in the region, we have noticeably expanded the defense budget of the armed forces to ensure the stable security of the region,” Larijani told a news conference before the exercises, according to Fars News.
State TV footage showed a number of gunboats swarming a huge model warship and blasting it with missiles.
The “maquette of an American aircraft carrier” was built to scale and targeted with cruise missiles and ballistic missiles, according to Fars News, which is linked to the Revolutionary Guard.
The gunboats also carried out an exercise in laying mines, according to the Iranian Students’ News Agency.
At one point a camera from state TV panned across a banner which read “If the Americans are ready to be buried at the bottom of the waters of the Gulf — so be it,” a quote from Iran’s first Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.
Separately, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, as decision time looms for a nuclear deal with world powers, sought Wednesday to win the support of the religious community at the “backbone” of the Islamic republic.
“For the government and the people of Iran, Qom is not a city, but the symbol of religious life,” Rouhani said in a speech in the city of Qom.


Iran shuts government offices, tightening virus restrictions

Updated 27 November 2020

Iran shuts government offices, tightening virus restrictions

  • The report did not specify how long the closures would last
  • It asked Iranians to postpone any planned visits to government offices

TEHRAN: Iran on Friday announced that all government offices will effectively close and operate with only essential staff, further tightening coronavirus measures as the country struggles to contain its most widespread wave of infection yet.
Starting this Saturday — the first day of Iran’s workweek — state TV said “only those employees who need to be present will be at work” in government offices. Managers will make the call on who must still come to work.
The report did not specify how long the closures would last, but asked Iranians to postpone any planned visits to government offices.
Infections have soared in recent months, and on Friday, Iran again set a record for new virus cases in a single day with 14,051 cases, bringing the total to 922,397.
Iran has also recorded more than 400 daily virus deaths since last Saturday, the same day new tightened restrictions went into effect. Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said the death toll on Friday reached 47,095, after 406 people died since Thursday.
Since Saturday, some government offices and organizations had closed or began working with less than 30% of their employees, while banks, post offices, communications and other utilities worked with half their staff.
Those new lockdown measures also included shuttering most businesses, shops, malls, and restaurants, and are set to last two weeks.
Iran’s government had recently resisted shutting down the country in an attempt to salvage an economy cratered by unprecedented American sanctions, which effectively bar Iran from selling its oil internationally. The Trump administration reimposed sanctions in 2018 after withdrawing from Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers.
Earlier this month, authorities ordered a month-long nightly curfew for businesses in Tehran and 30 other major cities and towns, asking nonessential shops to keep their workers home. Still, enforcement in the sprawling metropolis remains a challenge.