An unidentified drone was shot down by the Iranian Air Defence Force of the Army on Friday, while it was flying over the Iranian southern port city of Mahshar, where the country’s major petrochemical plants are located.
According to reports by local media, the Air Defence Force of the Iranian Army shot down an unidentified drone over Bandar-e Mahshahr in the Persian Gulf early on Friday morning.
No further details have been disclosed yet.
On June 20, the IRGC Aerospace Force already shot down an American spy drone over the territorial waters of Iran near the Strait of Hormuz at dawn.
After the incident, US President Donald Trump said the US air force was “cocked and loaded” to attack three Iranian targets, but he called off the strike only 10 minutes before it was set to take place.
Trump said in a series of tweets that he decided that the death toll was not a proportionate response to the Iranian shooting down of a US spy drone off the Iranian coast. However, many observers believe that the US leader feared open conflict with the Islamic Republic.
After Trump’s remarks, Commander of the IRGC Aerospace Force Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh said that his forces “could also have shot down a US P8 aircraft with 35 people on board, which was also violating Iran’s airspace. However, [the Iranian forces] decided to shoot down the drone instead, in order to just send a message to Washington.”
“We intended to send a message to American terrorists in the region,” Brigadier General Hajizadeh said, adding that his forces had also traced a military P8 aircraft violating the airspace of Iran.
“Along with the American drone was an American P8 aircraft with 35 personnel on board. It was also violating our airspace and we could have downed it too,” he said, adding, “But we did not do it, because our aim was to warn the terrorist forces of the US.”
General Hajizadeh also stressed that Iran does not want war, but is fully ready to defend itself, adding that “the fate of the downed US spy drone is awaiting any intruding flying object.”
“Our response to anything trespassing Iranian territory is this, and if such acts of aggression are repeated, our response will also be the same,” General Hajizadeh said.
“We don’t embrace war, but we are ready to fully defend the country (…) We possess a collection of US drones, which is a proof that US has violated Iran’s airspace and shows that they don’t want to respect the international law,” General Hajizadeh said.
“If such an aggression is repeated, we will add other US (military) products to complete this collection,” he noted.
“The US measure was in violation of international law, and we acted according to our legitimate responsibility,” General Hajizadeh said, adding that “It is possible that a US general or some operators were behind this American aggression. But this measure is a violation of international aviation rules by a spy drone, which subsequently received our natural response.
Source: FARS News Agency