US: Iran missile test is ‘pure fabrication’
U.S. officials tell NBC News that Iran’s claim it conducted missile tests in the Strait of Hormuz Tuesday is “pure fabrication” and that there is no evidence to back up Iran’s claims.
“The mid-range system … is capable of intercepting targets at a range of 50 km (30 miles) and can fly at an altitude of 75,000 feet,” state-run Press TV’s website said.
A Senior Revolutionary Guard commander said Tuesday that Iran test-fired four anti-ship missiles that hit a “big target” the size of a warship simultaneously, causing it to sink in “50-seconds” in the Strait of Hormuz.
According to U.S. officials, there was no missile firing in or around the strait or the Persian Gulf.
In the past Iranians have released photos and video of missile firings claiming they were part of current exercises. It was later proven, however, that the images were actually from earlier missile tests but doctored to alter the background.
In one photo that claimed to show six missiles being fired simultaneously, it was proven all missiles were actually the images of the same missile photo-shopped across the landscape.
Some news outlets reported Tuesday morning that the Iranian missile test is evidence of the threat posed to U.S. warships in the region, and in direct response to the international mine-sweeping exercises being conducted 250 miles from Iran in the North Arabian Sea. Some reports said the alleged missile tests were an obvious show of force from Iran on the eve of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s United Nations General Assembly address Wednesday.
Reuters contributed to this report.