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Iran, Russia likely to hold joint naval drills: commander


20:29, July 01, 2013

TEHRAN, July 1 (Xinhua) -- Iran and Russia will likely hold joint naval drills, Iranian Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari was quoted as saying by semi-official Mehr news agency on Monday.

The Russian side suggested the joint drills which "will possibly be held after the decision of the Islamic republic," said Sayyari without elaborating on the time and location of the exercise.

In 2009, the two countries carried out their first joint naval maneuvers in the Caspian Sea, involving about 30 vessels.

Leading a high-ranking military delegation, Sayyari will leave for Russia on Tuesday to visit a defense exhibition at an invitation from the Russian Navy, Press TV reported on Monday.

According to the report, Iran recently dispatched two indigenously-built missile-launching warships, Joshan (Shield) and Paykan (Arrow), to the Russian port city of Astrakhan in a move aiming at consolidating friendly relations between Tehran and Moscow.

Iran has launched several military maneuvers in the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman over the past years, with the Iranian military officials reiterating their calls for joint military drills of the regional Islamic states.

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