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Iran to launch at least 2 satellites this year: Defense minister

Iran’s Defense Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani speaks at a meeting with senior officials and elites of the Defense Ministry in Tehran on August 22, 2023. (Photo by

Defense Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani says Iran will launch at least two domestically-made satellites into orbit this year, [ending on March 19, 2024].

Speaking on Tuesday, Ashtiani announced that relevant organizations have been working to manufacture satellites and satellite carriers such as Simorgh (Phoenix).

“We are involved in the development and launch of satellites. Under our plan, we will have 2 to 3 satellite launches this year, something we hope to be successful,” he said.

Despite sanctions imposed by Western countries in recent years, Iran has managed to take giant strides in the civilian space program. 

It is among the world’s top 10 countries capable of developing and launching satellites.

‘Iran has drones more advanced than Mohajer-10’

Also in his remarks, the Iranian defense minister referred to the unveiling of Mohajer-10, an advanced indigenous drone that has an operational range of 2,000 km (1,240 miles) and can fly for up to 24 hours.

 He hailed the achievement as a great job that followed a lot of endeavors.

“The world is wondering how Iran can attain such achievements at the current pace. Right now, we have other items with capabilities beyond those of the Mohajer-10 drone. These accomplishments will be presented gradually,” he added.

‘Defense Ministry ready to step into car industry’

Ashtiani further expressed the readiness of the Defense Ministry to step into the automotive industry, if requested.

“There are considerations and instructions in this regard that should be written, but anyway, the Defense Ministry stands ready to enter the car industry as well.”

Iran's auto industry is the country's largest sector outside oil and gas. In recent years, however, it has faced challenges due to illegal sanctions. Car manufacturers have recorded accumulated losses, resulting in the short supply of vehicles and their high prices.

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