Analysis: Reported link between Houthi and Iranian ballistic missiles

December 6, 2017

FDD’s Long War Journal:

On November 30, Reuters cited select quotes from a confidential UN sanctions report noting shared “design characteristics” between a projectile Yemen’s Houthi rebels fired at Riyadh in early November and an Iranian short-range ballistic missile (SBRM). Known as the Burkan-2H in the Houthi arsenal and the Qiam-1 in the Iranian arsenal, the claim, if substantiated through a more public distribution of the UN report and/or official US confirmation, would be the latest indication of covert Iranian support for the Houthi insurgency against the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)-backed Hadi government.

What do we know about the Iranian missile?

The Qiam-1 is an Iranian SRBM that meets the usually accepted Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) metric as being nuclear-capable. This means that the missile can at a minimum traverse 300 km to deliver a warhead of at least 500 kg. Reported range and payload estimates for the Qiam-1 allege that it can travel up to 800 km carrying a 750 kg warhead. First debuting in Iran in 2010 with a triconic warhead, the Qiam-1 is a single-stage solid-fueled SRBM. It is also Iran’s first finless ballistic missile, implying the possession of some form of an advanced guidance system. Experts have noted that the Qiam-1 is an Iranian domestic upgrade to the Shahab-2, which itself is an Iranian copy of the Scud-C…

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