The U.S. Navy has denied that any of its unmanned spy planes is missing in the Middle East, despite reports that Iran has "captured" a U.S. drone.
A file photo of a ScanEagle drone, described as a low-cost, long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle built by a Boeing subsidiary (see high resolution)
Iranian state media carried an Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps statement on December 4 saying the drone was intercepted while "performing reconnaissance and gathering intelligence" in Iranian airspace over the Persian Gulf.
The Iranian media reports did not elaborate on how the aircraft was "captured."
Last month, Iran said it fired on but failed to stop a U.S. drone over the Persian Gulf. Tehran said that aircraft penetrated its airspace, but the United States disputed that claim.
A year ago, Iran said it had brought down a U.S. drone in eastern Iran, but U.S. officials said the drone malfunctioned and had to land.
Based on reporting by AFP, Reuters, AP, and BBC
Copyright (c) 2012 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org
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