ISFAHAN (Dispatches) – Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami on Tuesday hailed domestic experts’ efforts to boost the country’s self-sufficiency in the military sector and said this year, the Defense Ministry plans to manufacture more homegrown ‘Kowsar’ fighter jets.
In a speech during a visit to the Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Industrial Company in the central province of Isfahan , Brigadier General Hatami said over the past 40 years, the "hardworking” experts of the Iran Aviation Industries Organization (AIO) have made every effort to enhance the country’s air combat power.
He referred to the start of mass production of the homegrown fighter jet last year and hailed the full cooperation of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army's air force and support by its Commander Brigadier General Aziz Nasirzadeh as an outcome of their efforts.
General Nasirzadeh, for his part, expressed the hope that new Kosar fighter jets will join the operational fleet of the air force soon.
Brigadier General Hatami said that research works would continue on Kosar fighter jet, adding that the country would manufacture more advanced generations of the warplane in the future.
The operational flight of Kowsar during a ceremony to mark the Army Day earlier this year brought honor and dignity to the country, the defense minister stated.
He went on to say that the AIO experts are determined to manufacture more Kowsar fighter jets this Iranian year, which started on May 21.
In November 2018, Iran inaugurated the mass production line of Kowsar at the Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Industrial Company, a firm affiliated to the Defense Ministry’s Aviation Industries Organization.
The homegrown fighter jet had been unveiled in August. Capable of carrying various weapons, the aircraft is used for short aerial support missions.
The new fighter jet uses the fourth generation of military digital network and is equipped with heads-up display (HUD) system to increase the precision-striking power of weapons, advanced and multi-purpose radar for fire-control to boost the precision to trace the targets and threats and high-precision navigation system.
Kosar can be manufactured in two types of single-cockpits and double-cockpits and the second type can be used for training pilots in addition to enjoying combat capabilities.
According to the Iranian officials, the fighter jet is a supersonic combat plane different from the training Kosar 88 plane unveiled in April 2017.
Iranian officials have repeatedly underscored that the country will not hesitate to strengthen its military capabilities which are entirely meant for defense and that Iran’s defense capabilities will be never subject to negotiations.
In February 2018, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei called for efforts to maintain and boost Iran’s defense capabilities, hitting back at the enemies for disputing the country’s missile program.
"Without a moment of hesitation, the country must move to acquire whatever is necessary for defense, even if the whole world is opposed to it,” Ayatollah Khamenei said at the time.
******A handout picture released by Iran’s Defence Ministry yesterday shows the production line of the "Kowsar” domestic fighter jet, a fourth-generation fighter, with "advanced avionics” and multi-purpose radar.