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    Iran boasts of new Apache-killer weapon as tensions rise with U.S.

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    Iran has developed a new weapon to shoot down U.S. Apache attack helicopters, the Iranian Fars news agency has reported.

    Iran has developed a new weapon to shoot down U.S. Apache attack helicopters, the Iranian Fars news agency has reported.

    "Our enemies should not imagine that if their Apache choppers have shown a mighty and desirable performance in Iraq and Afghanistan, they can show the same might and power in any possible aggression against Iran. We will certainly put an end to the power of their Apaches through our measures," Fars quoted Col. Nasser Arab-Beigi of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guard Corps.

    The official did not specify the type of the weapon Iran is manufacturing to shoot down Apache helicopters.

    The United States and Israel have refused to rule out military action against Iran if diplomacy fails to resolve the dispute over Tehran's nuclear program.

    In a further rise in tensions, Iran hit out on Tuesday at U.S. plans to boost Gulf defenses.

    Parliamentary speaker Ali Larijani called the move to deploy ships with missile-targeting abilities off Iran's coast and anti-missile systems in the Gulf states of Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates "a new political trick to pave the way for its presence at others' expense."

    Iran launched a domestic arms development program after a U.S. weapons embargo was imposed during its 1980-88 war with Iraq. Since 1992, the Islamic Republic has reportedly produced its own Saeqeh and Azarakhsh jet fighters, stealth-capable Ghadir submarine, missile boats, torpedoes, tanks and armored carrier vehicles.

    Iranian officials said last year that Tehran had achieved self-sufficiency in manufacturing combat missiles of various modifications.

    Iran frequently holds military drills and shows off modern weaponry in an effort to demonstrate its readiness to thwart any attack on its territory.

    MOSCOW, February 3 (RIA Novosti)

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