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Iran said to mine data from U.S. drone

April 23, 2012 at 10:11 AM
| License Photo

TEHRAN, April 23 (UPI) -- The Iranian military announced it was able to get information from a U.S. surveillance drone recovered in its territory last year.

In December, the Iranian military said it retrieved an RQ-170 drone that had been flying under the authority of the CIA. It was reported that a remote U.S. pilot lost control of the vehicle near the Afghan border.

Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Brig. Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh said the Iranians were able to reverse engineer the craft.

He offered tracking data that placed the drone in California and later in Kandahar as evidence of his claims.

"The aircraft also conducted flights in Pakistan over the area where (Osama) bin Laden was killed two weeks before his death (in May 2011)," he was quoted by the semiofficial Mehr News Agency as saying.

Hajizadeh said he believed technology used in the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II and in stealth aircraft operated by the U.S. military was incorporated in the captured drone.

The Iranians have made similar claims about U.S. surveillance vehicles in the past. Tehran said it used an electronic warfare division to bring the surveillance drone down.

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