WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Iran’s Mehr News Agency explained that the footage was taken by an Iranian tactical reconnaissance drone as part of an ongoing naval drill codenamed Velayat-94.
“[I]n this observation which took place on the third day of Velayat-94 drills, the Iranian navy drone managed to take precise photographs of the systems installed on the US aircraft carrier and sent them immediately to the exercise’ command post,” the agency cited Iranian Navy Deputy Commander Rear Adm. Seyed Mahmoud Mousavi as saying.
The news agency added that the drills began on Wednesday and will last until February 1 in an area limited to eastern part of Hormuz Strait, Sea of Oman, northern Indian Ocean and 10th Parallel north.
The goal of Velayat-94 is to “demonstrate the capability and authority of Iran in maintaining security in the seas,” according to the agency.
A source in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps told Sputnik the following day that the US vessels had entered Iranian territorial waters due to technical issues.
The boat’s crew, nine men and a woman, was taken to international waters and freed on January 13.