Iran shows off captured drone, may share ‘precious’ U.S. tech with its allies

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NICOSIA — Iran has raised the prospect that it would transfer an
advanced U.S. unmanned aerial vehicle to its allies.

Officials said the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps was considering
transferring a downed U.S. UAV to Hizbullah or Syria. They said the
downed RQ-170, produced by Lockheed Martin, was still intact and could allow
Iran and its allies to understand U.S. aerospace technology.

Iran exhibits the undamaged, top-secret U.S. stealth drone RQ-170 Sentinel captured on Dec. 4.

“Military experts are well aware how precious the technological
information of this UAV is,” IRGC air commander Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh said.

Officials said Iran had allowed Russian experts to examine a captured American UAV in July. Moscow was said to have helped Iran develop its air defense system.

On Dec. 8, the Iranian media displayed the RQ-170 while officials identified its capabilities. They said the UAV was equipped with advanced radars, data links and intelligence-gathering systems, some of them already installed on the new Joint Strike Fighter.

“This kind of plane has been designed to evade radar systems and from the view point of technology it is among the most recent types of advanced aircraft used by the United States,” Hajizadeh said.

Officials said the military has developed the capability to down a UAV
without harming the platform. They attributed this to Iranian electronic
warfare capabilities, said to have been deployed by a new military unit.

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