Iran begins production of new surface-to-surface missile
TEHRAN (AFP) Sep 24, 2002
Iran began production Tuesday of its new surface-to-surface missile, the Fateh (Conqueror) A-110 which has a range of 200 kilometers (130 miles), state news agency IRNA reported.

Inaugurating the production, Iran's defence minister, Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani, described Iran's missile programme as a "deterrent" aimed at "bringing the security of Iran's borders to a maximum level."

He also asserted that Tehran had "no intention of increasing the range of its missiles".

No details on the load capacity of the Fateh A-110 were given, although the head of the Aerospace Industrial Organization, Ahmad Hamidi, said earlier this month that the missile was "one of the most precise in the world."

Israel closely monitors the long-range missile programmes of its arch-enemy Iran, and has expressed concern in particular about the Shahab-3 missile that has a range of 1,300 kilometers (808 miles), bringing the Jewish state within its reach.