Author`s name AP ©

Iran tests new weapon for use at sea, most likely missile

Iran has tested a new weapon for use at sea, the chief of the country's elite Revolutionary Guards was quoted Monday as saying by the official IRNA news agency.

The commander, Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari, claimed the new marine weapon is "unique in the world" and has a range of 300 kilometers (186 miles).

The report provided no further details and didn't say when or where the weapon was tested, but it quoted Jafari as saying that there is "no similar weapon in the service of armies in the world."

The alleged new weapon's range indicated it may be some type of torpedo but Iranian state radio called it a missile.

Iran and the West are locked in a standoff on the country's disputed uranium enrichment program, which the U.S. and its allies fear is aimed at making nuclear weapons. Iran denies the charge and says the program is only for producing electricity.

Both the U.S. and Israel have said they would prefer a diplomatic solution to the standoff, but have not ruled out other options, including a military one.

To show their readiness to defend, the Guards test fired missiles and torpedoes in the Persian Gulf last month, and Tehran claimed it tested a new Shahab missile with a range of 2,012 kilometers (1,250 miles).

In case of a possible strike on Iran, Jafari said the country will respond in every way it can. The enemy, he said, would prefer to make the duration of the war as short as possible.

But, "we will prolong it," Jafari said.

He also reiterated an earlier expressed warning by Tehran that Iran could block the narrow Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf in case it was attacked. Some 40 percent of the world's crude oil passes through the vital Gulf waterway.

"Enemies know that we are easily able to block Strait of Hormuz for unlimited period." the radio quoted Jafari. "The strait and vessels are in range of our various weapons."