US drone shot down, claims Iran

US drone shot down, claims Iran

Agency News

Tehran, June 20: Iran’s Revolutionary Guard on Thursday claimed to have shot down a US drone amid escalating tensions between Tehran and Washington over the collapsing nuclear deal.

The reported shootdown of the RQ-4 Global Hawk comes after the US military previously alleged Iran fired a missile at another drone last week that responded to the attack on two oil tankers near the Gulf of Oman, Iran Radio reported.

The US had recently claimed that Iran had tried to shoot down an American drone last week as well as a successful shootdown of one on June 6 by Iran-aligned Houthi forces in Yemen.

However, the US has rejected the claims. "No US aircraft were operating in Iranian airspace today," Navy Captain Bill Urban, a spokesman for the US military's Central Command, was reported as saying shortly before midnight on Wednesday.

The attacks come against the backdrop of heightened tensions between the US and Iran following President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers a year ago. The White House separately said it was aware of reports of a missile strike on Saudi Arabia amid a campaign targeting the kingdom by Yemen’s Iranian-allied Houthi rebels.