‘Booby-Trapped’ ISIL Drone In Deadly Iraq Attack

‘Booby-Trapped’ ISIL Drone In Deadly Iraq Attack

ISIS has used “commercial, off-the-shelf” drones on the battlefield for some time for reconnaissance and filming propaganda videos, but the October 2 attack is the first widely reported use of a commercial drone to carry explosives.”We’ve seen the enemy use a variety of drones and improvised drones and modified drones“, Col. John Dorian told reporters in a videoconference call from Baghdad.The New York Times reported yesterday that Pershmerga soldiers fighting the Islamic State in northern Iraq shot down a drone last week that exploded and killed two of them as they were examining it.According to a U.S. defence official, the incident unfolded October 2 when a small plane with a styrofoam body was either shot down or crashed in Erbil in northern Iraq. As the soldiers were examining the UAV, it detonated.On Wednesday, the secretary general of the Kurdistan Region’s defence ministry, Jabbar al-Yawar, confirmed the death toll and said the French soldiers had been training the Peshmerga at the time of the attack.Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, is at least five times bigger than any other IS-controlled city, Reuters says, and its capture would effectively eliminate the group’s self-declared caliphate from Iraqi territory.Also in recent months, the Defense Intelligence Agency and the Central Intelligence Agency completed classified documentation and assessments about the drone use by the Islamic State.RAND Corp. terror analyst Colin Clarke said weaponized drones, which have also been used by the Iran-backed terrorist group Hezbollah, are the “tip of the iceberg” for where terror groups can go with the latest technology.Islamic State militants in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul have crushed a rebellion led by one of the group’s own commanders, Iraqi security officials and sources within the city told Reuters.”The Coalition takes this threat seriously and is implementing increased force protection measures and improved UAS [Unmanned Aerial Systems] counter-measures to protect Coalition forces and our partners on the ground to ensure that they are protected from the full spectrum of threats in the operating environment”, USA officials stated. Meanwhile, the United States is making efforts to curb the turn to drones, as well: this summer, the Joint Improvised-Threat Defeat Organization, an office at the Pentagon, requested $20 million to develop a more reliable defense against weaponized commercial drones.In addition to unspecified “advanced systems” to defeat drones, he cited the deployment of the Drone Defender, a system which neutralizes in-flight drones with jamming radio pulses.The French military declined to comment.A video belonging to an al-Qaida offshoot, Jund Al-Aqsa, purportedly shows a drone landing on Syrian military barracks. One such shipment was intercepted a few months ago on its way to Gaza.

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