Iran Claims Capture of U.S. Drone

December 4, 2012

Associated Press

TEHRAN, Iran-Iran's state TV said Tuesday that the country's Revolutionary Guard has captured a U.S. drone after it entered Iranian airspace over the Persian Gulf.

The report quoted the Guard's navy chief, Gen. Ali Fadavi, as saying that the Iranian forces caught the "intruding" drone, which had apparently taken off from a U.S. aircraft carrier.

Mr. Fadavi said the unmanned Scan Eagle aircraft was now in Iran's possession.

"The U.S. drone, which was conducting a reconnaissance flight and gathering data over the Persian Gulf in the past few days, was captured by the Guard's navy air defense unit as soon as it entered Iranian airspace," Mr. Fadavi said. "Such drones usually take off from large warships."

 He didn't provide any further details or say when the incident happened. The U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet, based in Bahrain, said it was "looking into" the Iranian claims but had no immediate comment beyond that.

But Al-Alam, the state TV's Arabic-language channel, showed two Guard commanders examining what appeared to be an intact Scan Eagle drone. It wasn't immediately clear if that was the same drone Iran claimed to have captured. 

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