“The technology used in this radar-evading aircraft is also used in other American bombers and warplanes such as F-35 and B2. Therefore, they will be no longer out of range for Iranian radars and will not be able to make an aggressive move against our country,” Hossein Sheikholeslam said on Monday.
The official, who is also international advisor to Majlis (parliament) Speaker Ali Larijani, added that decoding the US RQ-170 spy drone’s data by Iran’s military experts and unraveling its navigation system would allow them to prevent similar violations of Iranian airspace.
“Losing this modern aircraft is a great loss for the US and [Washington] must change its aggressive approach [towards Iran],” Fars News Agency quoted him as saying.
Sheikholeslam further stated that the captured drone has special photography and monitoring abilities which can play a very important role in the exchange of intelligence between Iran and all rival states of the US.
“Iran can master all technologies used in this spy drone and reproduce a more advanced version of it given the capabilities of its scientists and researchers,” he added.
The US RQ-170 Sentinel stealth aircraft was downed, with minimal damage, by the Iranian Army’s electronic warfare unit on Sunday December 4 when flying over the Iranian city of Kashmar, some 140 miles (225km) from the Afghan border.
On December 6, two US officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed that the drone has been part of a CIA reconnaissance mission, involving the United State’s intelligence community stationed in Afghanistan.
Iran’s envoy to the UN, Mohammad Khazaei called on the world body on Thursday to condemn the United States’ violation of Iranian airspace, saying that the drone was flying 250 kilometers inside Iranian territory when it was forced down.
Iran has announced that it intends to carry out reverse engineering on the captured RQ-170 Sentinel stealth aircraft, which is similar in design to a US Air Force B-2 stealth bomber.
The RQ-170 is an unmanned stealth aircraft designed and developed by the Lockheed Martin Company.
The drone is one of America’s most advanced surveillance aircraft. Its loss is considered a major embarrassment for Washington.
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