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Iran says Azerbaijan is spying

Dec. 9, 2012 at 7:22 AM

TEHRAN, Dec. 9 (UPI) -- Azerbaijan is using drones to conduct spying missions on its border with Iran and Nagomo-Karabakh, Iran's Press TV reported Sunday.

Orbiter ultra-light drones assembled with Israeli help as well as the Hermes-450 -- Israeli-made unmanned aerial vehicles "for control and surveillance missions" -- are being used, the television report said. Iranians also claim Israeli military experts are in Azerbaijan to assist in the operations.

Israel's relations, particularly in the intelligence and military fields, with the predominantly Muslim Caspian country have been growing for several years.

In February, Jerusalem and Baku signed a $1.6 billion deal under which Israel will sell drones and anti-aircraft and missile defense systems to Azerbaijan.

Between 2009 and 2012, Israel sold 10 Hermes-450 drones to Azerbaijan, Press TV said.

The Times in London reported earlier this year that Israel uses Azerbaijan as a base for covert operations against Iran, which Tehran claimed included assassinating its nuclear scientists.

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