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Iran unveils cruise missiles in underground UAV base

Iran unveiled the Haider-2 cruise missile in an underground facility on 28 May. (Young Journalists Club)

Two previously unseen types of air-breathing missile were displayed during an event intended to showcase Iran's unmanned aircraft capabilities on 28 May.

The missiles were seen in media coverage of a visit by Major General Mohammad Bagheri, chief of the general staff of the armed forces, to an underground facility identified as Strategic Base 313, which is operated by Iran's regular military rather than the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), where he inspected dozens of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

The missiles were identified as the Heidar-1 and Heidar-2, with the Iranian media reporting that the former is launched from a UAV, has a range of 200 km, and a speed of 1,000 km/h. Two Haider-1s were shown either side of a Fotros UAV and a third attached to the wing of a Kaman-22 UAV.

In contrast to the Heidar-1, which has a ventral air-intake for an air-breathing engine, the Heidar-2 has a turbojet fixed below its fuselage: a configuration used on the larger cruise missiles Iran has previously unveiled, as well as the type Yemen's Houthi rebels call the Quds and the US military has designated the 351 land-attack cruise missile.

The Heidar-2's engine appears to be the same unlicensed copy of the Czech-built PBS TJ100 small turbojet that has been identified as the one used in the Quds missiles that have been recovered in Saudi Arabia and found in an Iranian arms shipment the US Navy intercepted before it reached Yemen in November 2019.

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