Iranian Zolfaghar missile

Iran exhibited surface-to-surface ballistic missiles at annual al-Quds rallies across the country, attended by millions, calling for the destruction of Israel.

Iran staged anti-Israel rallies across the country on Friday, with millions of protesters condemning Israel’s “occupation” of Palestinian territories and chanting “Death to Israel” as the powerful Revolutionary Guard displayed its ballistic missiles, including the type used this week in Syria.

Marchers in Tehran headed from various points of the city toward the Friday prayer ceremony at Tehran University campus grounds. Protesters burned the Israeli flag and effigies of Israeli leaders.

President Hassan Rouhani and other Iranian officials attended the demonstration. State media reported that similar rallies were underway in other cities and towns in Iran.

The anti-Israel rallies are an annual event marking al-Quds Day, a historic Arabic name for Jerusalem. Iran sees it as an occasion to express support for the Palestinians and emphasize the importance of Jerusalem for Muslims.

Iran staunchly backs terrorist groups seeking to annihilate the State of Israel, including the Hamas, which runs the Gaza Strip, and the Lebanon-based Hezbollah.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard on Friday displayed three surface-to-surface ballistic missiles, including the Zolfaghar — the type that Iran used this week to target the Islamic State group in Syria. The Guard said it fired six such missiles on Sunday at ISIS targets in the city of Deir el-Zour, more than 600 kilometers (370 miles) away.

Another missile on display was the Ghadr, with a range of 2,000 kilometers (1,250 miles) that can reach both Israel and U.S. bases in the region.

Iran holds al-Quds Day rallies each year on the last Friday of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, having marked the day since the start of its 1979 Islamic Revolution, when the country cut relations with Israel.

The Guard said the Iranian air strike in Syria was in retaliation for an ISIS attack earlier in June on Iran’s parliament and a shrine in Tehran that killed 18 people and wounded more than 50.

By: AP

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