Iran Tests More Missiles; U.S. Issues Warning

Iranian state media reported that Iran test-fired more missiles in the Persian Gulf on Thursday, and the United States pledged to defend its allies from an Iranian attack.

Iran state television reported that the missiles have what it called "special capabilities," but the report did not elaborate on what those were. The missiles were launched throughout the night, with another report saying the new tests included the Shahab-3 missile.

Officials have said the Shahab-3 could reach targets almost 1,250 miles away. It was the second day in a row that Iran conducted missile tests.

After Wednesday's military exercise, Washington called on Tehran to halt further tests if it wants to gain the world's trust. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice warned Iran that Washington will not back down in the face of threats against Israel.

"We are sending a message to Iran that we will defend American interests and the interests of our allies," Rice said Thursday in Georgia at the close of a three-day Eastern European trip.

The U.S. has said it wants to resolve the dispute over Iran's nuclear program diplomatically, but neither it nor Israel has ruled out a military option against Iran. Iranian officials have said the tests are intended to show that the country can defend itself.

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