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Iran tests armed drones and UAVs in unprecedented exercise


Iran’s Revolutionary Guards on March 14 launched a massive military exercise in the Strait of Hormuz aimed at testing and showcasing the capabilities of dozens of locally-made UAVs, including armed drones. According to a report by the Iranian ISNA news agency, the exercise was the largest of ist kind to ever take place in the country.


Iran tests armed drones and drones in an unprecedented exercise US MQ-1 Predator, armed with AGM-114 Hellfire missiles (Picture source: US Air Force)


Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Aerospace Division staged what Iranian state media described as "massive drone drills", including coordinated offensive operations with dozens of flying-wing drones based on the Lockheed RQ-170 Sentinel, captured by Iran in 2011, and Iranian copies of the General Atomics MQ-1 Predator.

During the exercise, a total of about 50 drones—including "Saegheh" unmanned combat aerial vehicles based on the RQ-170's flying wing design—were used in a coordinated air strike on training targets 1,000 kilometers (about 600 miles) from their launch site.

Iran currently possesses the biggest collection of captured or downed American and Israeli drones, including the US MQ1, MQ9, Shadow, ScanEagle, and RQ-170 as well as the Israeli regime's Hermes.