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Iran to sue US over airspace violation

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Lawmaker Kazem Jalali

A senior Iranian lawmaker calls on the Foreign Ministry to lodge a complaint against the US over the recent violation of Iran’s airspace by an American reconnaissance drone.

Member of the Majlis (parliament) National Security and Foreign Policy Committee Kazem Jalali said Sunday that the US has a long history of violating the sovereignty of other countries, ICANA news agency reported.

Jalali added that Iran has lodged a complaint with the UN Security Council about the American RQ-170 Sentinel spy aircraft that was flying over eastern part of the country, and the blatant US violation of its territorial integrity.

“Iran’s military with its high capability in the electronic war downed this US spy drone, which can fly at an altitude of over 50,000 feet, and this is considered a great success for our country,” said the lawmaker.

“On the other hand this incident also showed that the Americans violate the territorial integrity of our country and [the sovereignty of] a group of other states,” Jalali added.

On Sunday December 4, the Iranian Army’s electronic warfare unit downed with minimum damage the US RQ-170 Sentinel stealth aircraft which was flying over the Iranian city of Kashmar, some 225km (140 miles) from the Afghan border.

Iran has announced that it intends to carry out reverse engineering on the captured RQ-170 Sentinel stealth aircraft, which is also known as the Beast of Kandahar, and is similar in design to a US Air Force B-2 stealth bomber.

On Tuesday December 6, two US officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed that the drone was part of a CIA reconnaissance mission, involving the US intelligence community stationed in Afghanistan.

They claimed the reconnaissance capability of the RQ-170 Sentinel drone enabled it to gather information from inside Iran by flying along Afghanistan’s border with the Islamic Republic.

The RQ-170 is an unmanned stealth aircraft designed and developed by the Lockheed Martin Company.

Iranian Ambassador to the United Nations Mohammad Khazaei on December 8 called on the world body to condemn US aggressive moves against the Islamic Republic with respect to the reconnaissance drone that violated the Iranian airspace.

He made the plea in a letter sent to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, General Assembly President Nassir Abdulaziz a-Nasser, and Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s UN ambassador who holds the rotating Security Council presidency for December.

Meanwhile, Iran’s Foreign Ministry has summoned the Swiss ambassador, who represents US interests in the country, and the Afghan ambassador to condemn the US violation of Iranian airspace.


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