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Report: Iran to deploy submarines in Caspian Sea

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TEHRAN (AP): A semiofficial Iranian news agency has said Tehran plans to deploy submarines in the Caspian Sea.

Saturday's report by Fars quotes Adm Abbas Zamini as saying Iran plans to deploy "light submarines" to the oil-rich sea that adjoins Iran, Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan. He did not elaborate.

Relations between Iran and Azerbaijan have soured in the past year. Iran accuses Azerbaijan of harbouring anti-Iranian terrorists linked to Israel's Mossad spy agency. Azerbaijan in return says Iran supports Islamist dissidents. Both countries deny each other's charges.

Earlier this month Iran said it has begun the "initial stages" of designing nuclear-powered submarines.

Iran has domestically built several small submarines over the past years. It has recently overhauled one of the three non-nuclear Russian Kilo-class submarines it bought in the 1990s.

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