Iran denies that 'new' cruise missile is just an old one with new paint

Cruise missile can reach the UAE and threaten ships in the Gulf of Oman.

A missile unveiled by Iran is launched in an unknown location in Iran in this picture received by Reuters on August 20, 2020 (photo credit: WANA NEWS AGENCY/REUTERS)
A missile unveiled by Iran is launched in an unknown location in Iran in this picture received by Reuters on August 20, 2020
Iran’s Tasnim news, which is close to the Iranian regime, denied reports that its new “Abu Mahdi” missile is in fact just a previously known missile that it unveiled last year, called "Hoveyzeh." The Hoveyzeh cruise missile was unveiled last February and was supposed to be part of its long range Soumar missile program. 
It is a surface-to-surface cruise missile with a range up to 1,350 km., Iran claims. This is a long range and Iran has never demonstrated that its cruise missiles can actually perform this well. However, it used cruise missiles against Saudi Arabia in 2019 that flew hundreds of kilometers and it has shown capabilities to do long-distance precision ballistic missile strikes. 
Iran claimed in 2019 that this missile was a “nightmare” for Israel and its enemies. Then this week it claimed it had a new cruise missile named for Abu Mahda al-Muhandis, the Iraqi militia leader that the US killed in January.
Muhandis was a key pro-Iranian operative in Iraq for decades. He had led Kataib Hezbollah and was wanted for a bombing in Kuwait many years ago and was on a US sanctions list. He was considered an arch-terrorist, an Iraqi version of Hassan Nasrallah. In death he became a martyr, posters of his image festooning Baghdad. Now Iran wants to name a weapon after him.
Tasnim news wants to assure readers that the new missile is not just an old missile in new paint. It is unusual for a pro-regime outlet to run a story that seems to cast doubt on the regime narrative. In this case it is attempting to respond to rumors, but in so doing seems to affirm them. The article notes that Iran unveiled its new missile and that it supposedly has an upgraded engine.
Iran says that the new Abu Mahdi cruise missile is part of a naval defense system that can hit targets off shore, fired from land or other platforms. The report says that previously Iran had naval varieties called Ra’ad and Qadir with ranges of 300-350km and that this new missile can reach much longer ranges. 
Iran incorporated a turbojet into the Abu Mahdi missile, a technology it has used before, the report says. It also has changed the targeting system and use of active radar. It has integrated GPS navigation and this has enabled it to triple the usual range of anti-ship missiles. It uses rectangular wings, unlike the Noor family of missiles, the report says. It uses an engine used on Karar drones that has proven successful. It has a larger body and better control than previous missiles and a solid-fuel booster rocket. 
The Iranians claims this missile can be fired from coastal launchers, which Iran has installed in recent years. It says soon it will put it aboard ships, although Iran has a small navy so it isn’t clear what ships it could actually put it on. Tasnim news provides a helpful graphic with the report, showing its missile range can now reach the UAE, Qatar, Oman and Saudi Arabia. The message is clear: Iran can threaten shipping at long ranges, including anchorages in the Gulf of Oman.
Iran has recently been behind an alleged hijacking of the Gulf Sky tanker, harassing another tanker and also harassing a UAE ship. The latest harassment came after the US seized Iranian gasoline destined for Venezuela and also after a UAE-Israel deal. Iran is also angry over US pushing “snapback” sanctions and is messaging that it could respond at sea. Last year amid tensions with the US the Iranians mined six ships, badly damaging one and also downed a US drone and attacked Saudi Arabia’s Abqaiq.