U.S. MQ-9 Reaper Drone Crashes in Seychelles

A Reaper drone belonging to the U.S. military crashed at an airport on the island nation of Seychelles today, just a little over one week after a drone went down in Iran.

A statement from the U.S. Air Force confirmed the news, saying that it was a remotely piloted MQ-9 Reaper aircraft that crash-landed at the Seychelles International Airport during a routine patrol run on Tuesday. No injuries resulting from the crash were reported.

Seychelles civilian aviation authority official Lina Laurence said that the Reaper drone developed engine problems shortly after the aircraft lifted off, prompting the pilots to make an emergency landing as quick as possible. However, the aircraft was unable to slow down in time when attempting an emergency landing at the Seychelles airport, Laurence explains, and the drone crashed.

The U.S. Air Force said in its statement that the Seychelles government was immediately notified of the crash, and the two nations are cooperating to remove the debris.

The MQ-9 Reaper drone is one of many drones deployed by the U.S. military in the region to spot who terrorize the waters off the coast of East Africa.

Over the weekend, Iranian official Hossein Salami, deputy head of the Guard, said that Iran would not return the drone that crashed in the region early this month in spite of a formal request from Obama.

“No one returns the symbol of aggression to the party that sought secret and vital intelligence related to the national security of a country,” Salami said. “Iran is among the few countries that possesses the most modern technology in the field of pilotless drones. The technology gap between Iran and the U.S. is not much.”

[Image credit: U.S. Air Force]