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Venezuela displays Iranian anti-ship missiles

Venezuelan Defence Minister Vladímir Padrino López inspects a CM-90 anti-ship missile. (Ministerio del Poder Popular para la Defensa (Venezuela))

The Venezuelan military confirmed on 16 April that it has the CM-90 export version of Iran's Nasir anti-ship missile (ASM).

Defence Minister Vladímir Padrino López inaugurated what a defence ministry statement described as a workshop for the CM-90 at Base Naval CA Agustín Armario in Puerto Cabello as part of the Bolivarian Navy of Venezuela's (ABV's) anniversary celebrations on that day. It released photographs and a video of Padrino inspecting several ASMs and associated containerised testing equipment inside a building.

The Nasir was developed from the Nasr missile, which is Iran's version of the Chinese C704, with the solid-propellant motor replaced by a turbojet engine and a launch booster. Iranian export documentation says this makes the CM-90 88 cm longer than the CM-35, the export version of the Nasr, and increases its range from 35 to 90 km.

The Venezuelan defence ministry also announced that the new headquarters of the Combat Boat Squadron (ELC) was inaugurated at the TN Tomás Vega Naval Station in Turiamo on 16 April. It released a video showing Padrino visiting that base, where he inspected two of the ABV's Iranian-made fast attack craft in a floating dock.

The ABV's acquisition of these craft was revealed in July 2023 when two were seen in television coverage of a naval parade. The type is known as the Zolfaghar in Iran, while the US Navy refers to them as the Peykaap series, seemingly because this is the name of the original North Korean design. A video produced for the ABV's anniversary showed it has at least seven of them.

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