Tags: iran | drone | us | central command | tanker | oil

Iranian Missile Sailed Past US Drone During Oil Tanker Attack

Iranian Missile Sailed Past US Drone During Oil Tanker Attack
Photo shows the unmanned aerial vehicle MQ-9 Reaper. (Kyodo via AP)

By    |   Monday, 17 June 2019 04:33 PM

A U.S. military drone flying above one of the two oil tankers disabled by suspected Iranian mines was nearly shot down minutes after last week's attack.

The Washington Times reported that the MQ-9 Reaper drone was surveilling the scene above the Kokuka Courageous when a missile sailed to within a kilometer of the unmanned aerial vehicle.

"A modified Iranian SA-7 surface-to-air missile attempted to shoot down" the Reaper, U.S. Central Command spokesman Lt. Col. Earl Brown said.

"The SA-7 was ineffective and its closest point of approach to the MQ-9 was approximately one kilometer."

U.S. officials later determined, Brown said, that "this was a likely attempt to shoot down or otherwise disrupt the MQ-9 surveillance of the [Iranian] attack on the M/T Kokuka Courageous."

Earlier this month, another Reaper drone was shot down over Yemen by Houthi rebels, who used an SA-6 missile.

The Kokuka Courageous and another oil tanker were attacked last week as they sailed through the Strait of Hormuz, a channel that links the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. The Front Altair tanker burned for hours as it sat in the water, with thick black smoke pouring out of a hole in its side.

The U.S. believes the Iranians were behind the attacks.

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A U.S. military drone flying above one of the two oil tankers disabled by suspected Iranian mines was nearly shot down minutes after last week's attack.
iran, drone, us, central command, tanker, oil
208
2019-33-17
Monday, 17 June 2019 04:33 PM
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