Iran claims it captured U.S. drone

Drone number two.

Should this prove to be true, then these are either gifts, or every electronic component of US drones is compromised. Take your pick.

TEHRAN, Iran Iran claimed Tuesday it had captured a U.S. drone after it entered Iranian airspace over the Persian Gulf — even showing an image of a purportedly downed craft on state TV — but the U.S. Navy said all its unmanned aircraft in the region were “fully accounted for.”

“The U.S. Navy has fully accounted for all unmanned air vehicles operating in the Middle East region,” Cmdr. Jason Salata, a spokesman for the U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet in Bahrain, told CBS News. “Our operations in the Gulf are confined to internationally recognized waters and airspace.”

Salata told CBS News that the Navy has flown the Boeing-designed ScanEagle drones over the Gulf for years, and that they do occasionally lose one in the water, but he said there was “no indication we’ve lost one recently.”

His remark left open the possibility that the drone claimed by Iran could have been plucked from the sea in the past and unveiled for maximum effect following escalating tensions over U.S. surveillance missions in the Gulf.

Other countries in the region, such as the United Arab Emirates, also have ScanEagle drones in their fleets, and Salata would not rule out the possibility that the drone was being operated by a U.S. entity other than the Navy.

The Iranian announcement did not give details on the time or location of the claimed drone capture.

Al-Alam, the Iranian state TV’s Arabic-language channel, showed two Guard commanders examining what appeared to be an intact ScanEagle drone. It was not immediately clear if that was the same drone Iran claimed to have captured.

In the footage, the two men then point to a huge map of the Persian Gulf in the background, showing the drone’s alleged path of entry into Iranian airspace.

“We shall trample on the U.S,” was printed over the map, next to the Guard’s coat-of-arms.

Full article: Iran claims it captured U.S. drone (CBS)

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