Iran Launches Baby Sub
DEBKAfile’s Gulf sources disclose that Tehran accompanied the 35-member International Atomic Energy Agency’s decision Wednesday, March 8, by launching a new, locally-built submarine, the Nahang (whale) in the Persian Gulf. With the capability to carry multipurpose weapons, the sub is especially adapted to Gulf waters. Military experts report Iran also has six Russian-built SSK or SSI Kilo class diesel submarines patrolling the strategic waterway.
Picture of sub at link. Judging scale from the size of the guy standing in front of the conning tower, it's about 40-50 feet long with a 8-10 foot beam. More of a swimmer delivery vehicle or mine layer than a attack sub. Possibly designed to sneak into another Gulf countries port and attack anchored vessels. Worst case, they could install a crude nuke in it for a suicide mission.
From MEMRI: Following are excerpts from footage of the new Iranian Nahang 1 submarine, aired on the Iranian News Channel (IRINN) on March 8, 2006.

Reporter: The Nahang 1 ("Whale") sumarine has joined the navy of the Iranian army. This submarine was designed and manufactured with Iranian knowledge, and it is one of Iran's largest defense programs.

Navy Commander of the Iranian Army, Admiral Sajjad Kouchaki: Nahang 1 is the result of the labor of the navy's scientists, scholars, researchers, and experts. It took a long time, but fortunately, we've managed to design this submarine.

Reporter: The Nahang 1 is fully compatible to conditions in the Persian Gulf. In terms of maintenance and repairs, there is Iranian knowhow. It provides the navy with unique options for its use. Its design and construction involved 220 experts, and 1.2 million hours of scientific and industrial work.
Posted by: Steve 2006-03-09