The state-run IRNA news agency reported that the carrier could orbit a satellite weighing 80 kg (176 lb) about 500 km (310 miles) from Earth.
General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, commander of the Guard’s aerospace division, said the Guard hopes to soon use the rocket to launch a new satellite, named Nahid, into orbit.
Iran says its satellite program is intended for scientific research and other civilian uses, similar to its nuclear activities. The United States and other Western countries have long been skeptical of the program, as the same technology can be used to develop long-range missiles.Previous launch drew condemnation from US
The Guard operates its own space program and military infrastructure in parallel with Iran’s regular army and only serves Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Over the past decade, Iran has sent several short-lived satellites into orbit and in 2013 launched a monkey into space. However, the program has been having issues recently. Five consecutive failed launches of the Simorgh program, another satellite-carrying rocket.
Authorities said at the time that three researchers had died in a fire at the Imam Khomeini spaceport in February 2019. A launch pad rocket explosion occurred later that year, attracting the attention of former President Donald Trump.
The security guard’s announcement came in the seventh week of protests sparked by the death in custody of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who was detained on suspicion of violating the country’s strict dress code for women.
The protests that have engulfed the country, initially focused on state-mandated headscarves, or hijabs, have quickly transformed into one of the biggest challenges for the government since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Protesters overthrow clerical rule and call for Khamenei’s death.
Security forces, including paramilitary volunteers from the Revolutionary Guard, cracked down on the demonstrations, killing more than 300 people, including 41 children, according to Oslo-based Iran Human Rights.
On Saturday, Iran’s student union reported protests at at least six major universities across the country. Universities have been at the center of unrest, fueling protests despite crackdowns.
Anger at Iran’s ailing economy, suffocated by US sanctions and years of mismanagement, has also driven people to the streets. Negotiations to revive Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers that granted Tehran sanctions relief in exchange for a strict curb on its nuclear program stalled months ago.
Iran’s currency, the rial, plunged to an all-time low against the dollar on Saturday. Iran’s currency was trading at 360,000 rials to the dollar, compared with 32,000 rials to the dollar at the time of the 2015 nuclear deal.
Unrest gripped the southeastern provinces of Sistan and Balchestan on Friday, drawing deadly reactions from security forces. Advocacy group HalVash claimed security forces killed at least 16 people.
Iran’s prominent Sunni cleric Mouravi Abdulhamid Esmailzehi on Saturday condemned the violence in Sistan and Balchestan as another “bloody disaster” as security forces chanted “slogans” outside the governor’s office. , said he fired at protesters who only threw stones.
Justice authorities in Sistan and Baluchestan said Saturday that 620 people had been arrested in the province during riots, with 45 so far accused of damaging public property and urging young people to join the protests on social media. Convicted of a crime.