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Iran President Hassan Rouhani hails military satellite launch by IRGC (www.thestatesman.com)

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani hailed the recent launch of a military satellite by the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) into orbit.

“It was a right move in the right direction,” Rouhani was quoted as saying by Press TV on Friday.

President Rouhani held a telephonic conversation withDefence Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami , saying “The successful launch of the home-made Noor 1 (Light 1) satellite was a proof that Iran has pursued a sound policy to develop its space sector”.

“This success is a sign that strengthening the space sector in the country and the armed forces have been in a correct and effective step,” he added.

On Wednesday, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps broke the news of what it said was its own satellite launch, hailing it as a milestone for the country’s space programme.

On Sunday, the Revolutionary Guards accused the US Navy of “unprofessional and provocative behavior” that had interfered with their own exercises, according to Mehr News Agency.

Iran considers itself the guardian of the Gulf and opposes any western military presence in the channel, which is vital for global shipping and oil transport.

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