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Monday, 27 May, 2002, 13:12 GMT 14:12 UK
Iraq 'lands US spy plane'
Map of Iraq no-fly zones
Iraq says it has forced down an unmanned American spy plane in the north of the country.

Iraqi state radio said air defences had taken control of the drone on Sunday and forced it to land "by our own means" but gave no further details.

Unmanned US spy plane
Iraq says it has shot down other US spy planes
Iraq has in the past claimed to have shot down such planes, but this is the first time Baghdad has said a plane was forced to land.

An American military spokesman said the Iraqi report was false.

British and American planes routinely patrol two air exclusion zones in Iraq that were established after the Gulf war.

The zones were established to protect the Kurdish population in the north and the Shia population in the south.

Iraq does not recognise the zones, which are not covered by any UN Security Council resolution.

Iraq has said that it shot down three unmanned American spy planes between August and October 2001. The losses were confirmed by the US.

Baghdad says that US and British air strikes have killed 1,477 people and injured 1,358 since the no-fly zones were set up. However, the figures cannot be confirmed.

Defence sources in the neighbouring Gulf state of Kuwait said on Sunday that an unmanned US drone had crashed in the emirate as it was flying back from a "surveillance operation".

There has been no US confirmation of the Kuwait crash.


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11 Sep 01 | Middle East
10 Sep 01 | Middle East
28 Aug 01 | Middle East
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