IranMiddle East

Iran surveillance, reconnaissance drones take center stage on 2nd day of Army drills

The Iranian Army fields its advanced surveillance and reconnaissance unmanned aircraft on the second day of maneuvers taking place across a “sensitive” stretch of the country’s southeastern coastline.

The drills, codenamed Eqtedar (Strength) 99, began on Tuesday along the Makran coastal area starring Army Ground Force and its rapid-response brigades, but also involving Army Air Force and Army Aviation.

The event began as part of sweeping countrywide military exercises that have been underway as means of both testing the Iranian military’s defense readiness and sending a warning signal to the country’s ill-wishers.

The Army exercises continued on Wednesday, with drone squads taking center stage.

Reporting on the second day, the Army hailed that the aircraft had managed to both surveil the entire assault course and identify all the foreign vessels that were sailing in nearby international waters during their reconnaissance operations.

The drones, it added, included the latest variation of the country’s Mohajer drones, namely Mohajer-6, which is capable of being used in combined surveillance and combat operations and boasts enhanced flight endurance. The drone has successfully been used by Iran in a number of anti-terror operations in recent years.

The Army statement named one of the achievements landed during the Wednesday maneuvers as the forces’ simultaneous deployment of Army drones, various types of helicopters, and transport aircraft within a short time span.

Heliborne operation

Army gunships, that have been fitted with nighttime flight systems, were flown for the first time during the midnight earlier in support of the rapid-response brigades.

The helicopters would deploy firepower against stationary and mobile targets across the coastline to enable the brigades’ advance.

Over the past several weeks, Iran’s Army and Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) have staged close to a dozen different maneuvers. The exercises have been concomitant with a provocative so-called show of force by the United States and its allies in the region that have featured repeated overflights of the Persian Gulf and dispatch of American warships to the region.

‘Ground Force capable of combined operations’

Speaking on the sidelines of the Wednesday maneuvers, Chief Commander of the Iranian Army Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi announced that the Ground Force “is capable of conducting special and combined operations.”

“Combined operations are among the most complicated types of operation that is usually conducted by rapid response and professional brigades,” he said.

The most recent stage of the maneuvers that took place in “one of the country’s sensitive spots, witnessed conduct of such operations, involving a combination of military equipment, many-skilled servicemen, and multi-purpose military units,” the commander noted.

The Ground Force’s professional brigades, Mousavi said, showed that they were at the highest level of their combat readiness and enjoyed their widest possible radius of action, therefore, being prepared more than ever for such operations.

The drills, he added, “actually serve as a response to the enemies of the nation and the ill-wishers of Iran’s great establishment that [points out that] they would regret taking any move that could be based on miscalculation.”

The country’s servicemen are prepared to defend the Iranian nation “until the last drop of their blood,” Mousavi concluded.

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