Iran has launched a rocket into orbit carrying what state-owned Al-Alam televison reports as an "experimental capsule".
The official Islamic Republic News Agency said the "home-built" Kavoshgar-3, or Explorer-3 rocket was launched at a ceremony to commemorate this month's anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution that overthrew Iran's monarchy.
The rocket is reportedly carrying a capsule with live animals including a rat, turtles and worms.
The state television said the rocket launched Wednesday was "designed to send consecutive aerial images to ground and measure environmental information."
Press TV quoted Iranian space officials saying live video transmission and telemetry would allow further studies on the rat -- named Helmz-1 -- turtles and worms during their space voyage. It was not clear whether the creatures will return to Earth.
President Ahmadinejad praised the launch of the satellite and the progress his country was making in its space programme.
BBC News has contributed to the report.
The Russian Defence Ministry acknowledged that the Americans treat Russian military men in Syria with respect. The Americans always warn Russia accordingly, but not Israel
After the incident with the shootdown of the Ilyushin Il-20 reconnaissance aircraft over the Mediterranean Sea, Russia will supply an S-300 anti-aircraft missile system to Syria
Indeed, how dare they run US-independent policy? They should have followed the example of the European Union that turned independent states of the Old World into US-ditto entities