RNA - Iran will respond firmly to US aggression should it retaliate for the downing of its spy drone, the spokesman for the Supreme National Security Council Keivan Khosravi told Sputnik on Thursday.
"The US has no right for a military response after Iran reacted to this infringement. Iran is determined to offer a firm response to any aggression", Khosravi told Sputnik hours after the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps shot down a US military drone for violating Iran’s airspace.
An “American spying drone” was shot down by the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Aerospace Force over Iranian airspace at dawn on Thursday. According to the IRGC, the US military surveillance drone was flying with its tracking equipment switched off at the time, violating international aviation regulations.
The United States had confirmed that one of its reconnaissance palnes was shot down by Iraniain air defenses, but denied that it intruded into Tehran’s airspace at the time.
Tehran has released two videos that show the flight route of the plane as well as the moment it was brought down by an Iran-made air defense shield called 'Third of Khordad'.
On Thursday evening, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that his country has retrieved parts of the US Global Hawk that was shot down on Thursday morning from the country's territorial waters, rejecting Washington's claim that the aircraft was targeted in international waters.
"[The] US drone took off from UAE in stealth mode and violated Iranian airspace," Zarif wrote on Twitter on Thursday night, adding that the Global Hawk drone "was targeted near... Kouh-e Mobarak" region in the Central district of Jask in Hormuzgan province after the aircraft violated Iran's airspace.
Zarif even provided the coordinates where the US aircraft was intercepted, and added, "We've retrieved sections of the US military drone in OUR territorial waters where it was shot down."
In an earlier tweet, Zarif stated that Iran "will take this US new aggression to [the] UN and show that the US is lying about international waters".
According to Fars News Agancy, the Iranin foreign minister noted that Tehran does not want war, "but will zealously defend our skies, land and waters".
Commander of the IRGC Major General Hossein Salami stressed that the move should alert Washington officials to stay away.
The incident sent "a clear message" to the US and other enemies that Iran will show a firm and crushing response to any aggression, Salami stated.
"Borders are our red lines and any enemy which violates them will not go back home and will be annihilated. The only way for enemies is to respect Iran's territorial integrity and national interests," the major general noted.