Iran News ...


10/02/16

Iran Touts New Combat Drone 5 Years After Capturing US Prototype

Source: VOA

Iranian news reports say Tehran has built a new aerial attack drone similar to a U.S. military aerial vehicle captured five years ago after it entered Iranian airspace from the country's eastern border with Afghanistan. The semiofficial Tasnim news agency said the "Saeqeh" ("Thunderbolt") long-range drone is capable of hitting four targets with smart bombs with what it called "pinpoint accuracy."


Iran's new attack drone called a "Saeqeh" ("Thunderbolt")
Photo released by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Oct. 1, 2016, in an undisclosed location in Iran
See more photos:Iran's IRGC unveils new combat drone

The report described the new drone as a homegrown aircraft "made by reverse engineering of [an] American Lockheed Martin RQ-170" vehicle that was downed in December 2011. It described the new drone as part of a broad range of unmanned vehicles with civilian and military applications.

There has been no official U.S. comment on the Tasnim report.




Related coverage by the Iranian press
 

In 2012, Iranian media quoted a top general as saying data recovered from the seized U.S. drone showed it was used to conduct surveillance on the Pakistan hideout of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden shortly before he was killed by U.S. forces in 2011.

The Washington Post also reported that year that a CIA stealth surveillance drone had earlier flown deep over Iranian territory, capturing images of Iran's high-security Qom uranium enrichment facility before leaving the country's airspace.

During that period, Iran and Western powers were embroiled in a contentious dispute over the details of Iran's suspect nuclear program, which was widely thought to be working to develop nuclear weapons.

The dispute led to a series of crippling Western sanctions against Iran that remained in place until 2015, when Tehran reached a preliminary agreement with Western powers to redesign its nuclear facilities to curtail the production of nuclear fuels.

... Payvand News - 03/25/16 ... --



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