Iran announces the simultaneous deployment of three satellites for the

Iran announces the simultaneous deployment of three satellites for the first time

Iran announced on Sunday that it had sent three satellites into orbit simultaneously for the first time, a new step in the development of the country's aerospace activities despite Western sanctions.

“For the first time, three Iranian satellites were successfully sent into space using the Simorgh launch vehicle built by the Ministry of Defense,” state television said.

The 32 kg Mahda satellites and the less than 10 kg Kayhan 2 and Hatef satellites will be placed in an orbit 450 km above the Earth's surface and are intended to test “subsystem satellites” as well as research and telecommunications missions.

Its launch came a week after that of a research satellite, Soraya, developed by the Iranian Space Agency and carried by a Revolutionary Guard rocket, Ghaem-100.

Soraya was placed in an orbit 750 kilometers above Earth, marking “the first time” Iran has sent a satellite “beyond 500 kilometers,” according to the official Irna news agency.

This launch was criticized by Germany, France and the United Kingdom in a joint statement and condemned by Tehran as an “interventionist” act.

Iran says its aerospace activities are peaceful and in line with a U.N. Security Council resolution.

But Western governments fear that their satellite launch systems contain technologies that are interchangeable with those used in ballistic missiles capable of delivering a nuclear warhead.

The Islamic Republic of Iran has faced crippling U.S. sanctions since Washington withdrew from an international agreement in 2018 that was intended to limit Iran's nuclear activities in return for a lifting of international sanctions.