As tensions between Iran and the United States escalated in the Mediterranean Sea, the Iranian Navy inducted its brand new destroyer, Deylaman, into service.
The induction ceremony was attended by some high-profile officials, including the commander of the Iranian Army, Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi, the commander of the Iranian Navy, Rear Admiral Shahram Irani, and the Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces, Major General Mohammad Hossein Bagheri, Iran’s Mehr News Agency reported.
During the ceremony, Rear Admiral Irani stated that the Deylaman destroyer, equipped with up-to-date equipment, could raise the standard of military training and rescue operations.
Admiral Irani said earlier this week that the Deylaman is the most recent iteration of the Jamaran destroyer, albeit with modernized hardware. According to the state-run IRNA news agency, the 1,400-ton Deylaman destroyer, named after a town in northern Iran, is 95 meters (312 feet) long and 11 meters (36 feet) broad. It can launch torpedoes at 30 knots (56 kph, 35 mph).
The Deylaman destroyer is reportedly capable of concurrently detecting over 100 objects, including airplanes, drones, helicopters, ships, and submarines. With this latest induction, Iran has deployed six warships in the Caspian Sea, which Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Iran share. It is the world’s most enormous inland body of water.
Rear Admiral Shahram Irani, the commander of the Iranian Navy, announced in September that the force will soon get a new destroyer designed and built in Iran. At the time, he noted that the new destroyer would have far more sophisticated systems than the warships that had already been unveiled and inducted into the Iranian Navy.
Speaking at a ceremony to commemorate the anniversary of the Iran-Iraq war fought between 1980 and 1988, Irani said Iran’s military vessel, named Deylaman, will soon become part of Iran’s navy fleet. Although Iran’s naval industry is purportedly producing the fourth destroyer of the Jamaran class, the Dena, he said that Deylaman is far more advanced than all other vessels of the Jamaran class.
The Dena destroyer, for one, can detect, track, and strike a variety of aerial, surface, and subsurface targets. It is outfitted with various offensive and defensive weapons and is built to withstand lengthy sea voyages. Helicopters can also be transported on Dena’s deck.
Iran unveiled the hypersonic missile "Fattah II" for the first time.
Fattah-2 makes use of a Hypersonic Glide Vehicle. pic.twitter.com/FZvGWLBQlP
— Iran Observer (@IranObserver0) November 19, 2023
While little remains known about the Deylaman destroyer, the induction of this vessel came at a time when the Iranian defense industry was making significant strides. For instance, the Iranian military unveiled the Fattah-2 hypersonic missile, a hypersonic cruise missile classified as part of the HGV (Hypersonic Glide Vehicle).
In addition, several attack and surveillance drones and modern Iranian air defense systems, such as the 320-kilometer-range Mehran air defense system, were displayed at the warship induction event.
The Iranian Navy has also made significant advancements recently, inducting cutting-edge equipment to bolster naval power. For instance, Iran’s Revolutionary Guards unveiled new ships equipped with missiles with a range of 600 kilometers in August this year.
A month later, IRGC Navy Commander Rear Admiral Ali Reza Tangsiri announced on September 24 that his forces had created military drones that could launch from and land on water. The general continued that the IRGC Navy had also created hybrid drones with two independent engines for propulsion and launch.
The induction, which military analysts widely see as Iran’s attempt at force projection, comes amid growing tensions in the Middle East, especially with the United States. Although tensions have persisted between the two sides since the beginning of this year, they have somewhat intensified since the US expanded its presence in the Mediterranean since Israel declared war against Hamas last month.
Iran’s Naval Inductions Come Amid Tensions With The US
Speaking at the induction ceremony, the head of the Iranian Navy emphasized the significance of maintaining maritime security in the Caspian Sea and the Persian Gulf by stating that the Deylaman destroyer represents the strength of the Navy and the Armed Forces.
In addition to highlighting the necessity of modernizing navy hardware and building various ships, he claimed that the Deylaman destroyer could accommodate infantry, riflemen, and special forces. Irani noted that such a capability can establish enduring security in the Caspian Sea, the Strait of Hormuz, and the Persian Gulf.
Before the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas conflict on October 7, there had been an upsurge in hijackings in the Persian Gulf, the Strait of Hormuz, and the Gulf of Oman. This was primarily because of US-Iranian tensions and limitations on selling Iranian oil.
Dimitris Maniatis, COO of private maritime security company Seagull Maritime, said, “This is part of a tit-for-tat war between the US, UK, and Iran, and could draw other countries in. Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy wants to influence the geopolitical scene and show they control the Straits of Hormuz.”
Three oil tankers flying the international flag were taken hostage by Iranian naval forces in April and May in retaliation for US seizures of ships purportedly carrying Iranian oil during sanctions enforcement operations.
Incidentally, on November 26, the US Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group crossed the Strait of Hormuz and entered the Persian Gulf, making it abundantly evident to Iran that the US intends to protect maritime security. The US CENTCOM said: “While in the Arabian Gulf, the IKECSG are patrolling to ensure freedom of navigation in key international waterways while supporting CENTCOM requirements throughout the region.”
The transit of the US carrier follows a spate of incidents in the region. Two Israeli-linked vessels, the box ship CMA CGM Symi and the product tanker Central Park, allegedly came under attack by triangle-shaped drones that are suspected of belonging to the Shahed class.
Tensions have nevertheless been rising between the US and Iran in the region. A US attack helicopter on a routine flying operation in international airspace was repeatedly targeted by laser beams from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy vessels in September. The AH-1Z Viper is from a military unit deployed aboard the USS Bataan, an amphibious assault ship.
The US Navy destroyers have also repeatedly come under attack by missiles from Iran-backed militias in the region. Iran has openly threatened the United States and Israel against the relentless air bombing of the Gaza Strip. The Iranian regime said in no ambiguous terms that the US will pay the price for “Israeli crimes” in Gaza.
As the nation’s newest destroyer joins the naval fleet, the Iranian Armed Forces’ readiness and preparedness are critical to maintaining deterrent capability and long-term security, according to the country’s top military commander.