Iran’s Defense Ministry showcased a new drone called the Mohajer-10, drawing similarities to America’s MQ-9 Reaper. The country claims that the unmanned aircraft can remain airborne for up to 24 hours while having the capability to reach Israel.
The drone, named after the Farsi term for “immigrant,” has been part of Iran’s drone line since 1985. According to Iran’s state-run IRNA news agency, the Mohajer-10 can fly at altitudes of up to 24,000 feet with a speed of 210 kph (130 mph). It has the capacity to carry a bomb payload of up to 300 kilograms (660 pounds) and can also be equipped with electronic surveillance equipment and a camera.
Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi commended the scientific and technological advancements of the nation during a Defense Industry Day conference. State television broadcasted Raisi’s remarks, in which he emphasized Iran’s friendly relations with all countries while asserting the armed forces’ readiness to defend against any invasion.
The Associated Press has not yet verified the claims made by Iran regarding the drone’s capabilities. However, a video released by a state television channel showed the Mohajer-10 successfully taking off from a runway.
It is essential to note that long-range drones, like the Reaper, rely on ground stations and satellite communications for operation. Israel, which possesses its own long-range, high-endurance drones, did not immediately respond to the news of Iran’s new drone.
Iran has a history of capturing U.S. drones, but there is no evidence indicating that they have obtained a General Atomics’ Reaper. Nevertheless, the country has been known to reverse-engineer captured drones in the past. It is worth mentioning that North Korea previously revealed drones similar to the Reaper, possibly based on publicly available information.
Aside from unveiling the Mohajer-10 drone, Iran also announced the provision of two ballistic missile types to its army and the Revolutionary Guard. One of these missiles is named after Qassem Soleimani, the Iranian general killed in a 2020 strike in Baghdad that was reportedly carried out by a Reaper drone.
Iran has showcased numerous drones capable of long-endurance flights in recent years, but their exact utilization in combat situations remains unclear. These drones have also played a significant role in Russia’s involvement in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. Iran initially denied supplying drones to Moscow but later admitted to doing so, although they claimed that the sale occurred before the war started.
In June, the White House revealed that Iran is assisting Russia in constructing a drone manufacturing plant near Moscow. This development aims to ensure a consistent supply of weaponry to Russia.
– IRNA News Agency