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Iran holds military parade to mark 8-year war with Iraq
23/9/2007 9:13

Iran yesterday held an annual military parade in Tehran to mark an eight-year war with Iraq, displaying its new home-made "Saegheh" fighter jet and long-range missiles.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and ranking commanders of the armed forces, the elite Revolution's Guards, and the defense ministry presented in the parade which kicked off at the mausoleum of the founder of the Islamic Republic, Imam Khomeini.

"Iran is influential in the area and the world, the world must understand that the Iranian power always prefer peace, stability, brotherhood and justice," Ahmadinejad said in his speech during the ceremony marking the 27th anniversary of the 1980-88 war.

Meanwhile, the top leader urged the US troops to withdraw from Iraq, stressing "the presence of illegitimate forces in the region is the cause of all threats."

"It would benefit themselves and the region if they leave (Iraq)," he added.

Large crowds of soldiers and military equipment marched in front of Iranian officials and foreign delegates in a show of Tehran's military and defense power, including two new "Saegheh" fighter jets and a long-range missile with a range of 1,800 km.

"Saegheh", which Iran said was home-researched, designed and built, has just been successfully testified two days ago. Iranian officials have said this new plane would join the air force during the parade.

Iran held the large military show amid growing international pressure on the country's disputed nuclear program.

Washington has never ruled out the possibility to attack Iran over Tehran's refusal to halt uranium enrichment work. However, Iran has repeatedly vowed to fight against any aggression.

A top Iranian military commander warned last Wednesday that his country would bomb Israel back if Iran was attacked by the Jewish state, which is the ally of US and considers Tehran its biggest enemy since President Ahmadinejad called an "elimination" of the Jewish country.