Iran warns against air encroachments after U.S. drone targeted

DUBAI Fri Nov 9, 2012 6:39am EST

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DUBAI Nov 9 (Reuters) - Iran said it would deal decisively with any foreign encroachment into its airspace, an apparent warning to the United States after one of its surveillance drones was targeted by Iranian warplanes last week.

"The defenders of the Islamic Republic will respond decisively to any form of encroachment by air, sea or on the ground," Fars news agency quoted General Massoud Jazayeri, a senior armed forces commander, as saying on Friday.

"If any foreign aircraft attempts to enter our airspace our armed forces will deal with them," he said. Jazayeri did not mention the drone incident specifically.

Pentagon officials said the unarmed drone was in international airspace when Iranian warplanes opened fire on it on Nov. 1 but the aircraft was not hit. Washington has issued a formal protest to the Iranian authorities.

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