The Iranian state-run media is reporting that Iran military has shot down an unmanned US drone over the country’s new Fordo uranium enrichment facility. Javanoline.ir and Press TV have quoted a member of National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of the Iranian Majlis (Parliament) as saying that IRGC's Air Defense units brought down the spy drone over Fordo. There has been no confirmation of the incident by either the US military or the CIA. The IRGC also has not produced any photos of the downed aircraft.
Fordo is built next to a military complex near the central city of Qom. Its existence was disclosed by Western intelligence agencies in 2009. Only yesterday Iran had announced that a new generation of centrifuges was being installed at one of its uranium enrichment facilities. Iran maintains two such facilities, at Fordo and Natanz. The new centrifuges, with higher quality and speed, could have been installed at Fordo.
UPDATE: Voice of America (VOA), the official external broadcasting service of the US government, reported today that senior intelligence and military officials in the US have denied the report that Iranian forces have shot down one of its drones [VOA Persian, 20 July].
AP File Photo: MQ-1 Predator, an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), commonly referred to as a drone, used by the U.S. Air Force and the CIA. The Predator carries cameras and other sensors and can carry Hellfire missiles and other munitions.