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UPDATED: 08:30, April 02, 2007
Iran accuses U.S. planes of violating its airspace
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Two U.S. airplanes have violated Iran's airspace in the southwestern province of Khuzestan, Iran's state television Sunday quoted a local military commander as saying on its website.

The airplanes on Saturday trespassed Iranian airspace from the northwest of Abadan, Khuzestan province, and disappeared from its southwest, said Colonel Aqili, commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) in Abadan.

"The planes cast out white smoke trails, attracting the local people's attention," he was quoted as saying, but without giving the types of the two U.S. airplanes or their duration of the alleged violation.

He also said that U.S. airplanes had violated Iranian airspace several times in the past, but he did not provide details on the

On Jan. 16, local Fars News Agency reported that Iranian troops had shot down a U.S. pilotless spy plane.

The aircraft was brought down when it was trying to cross the borders "during the last few days," Seyed Nezam Mola Hoveizeh, a member of the Iranian parliament, was quoted as saying.

The lawmaker gave no exact date of the shot-down or any other details about the incident, but said "the United States sent such spy drones to the region every now and then."

The announcement came amid reports that the United States is increasingly flexing its muscles to counter Iran's growing regional assertiveness and put more pressure on Tehran over its controversial nuclear programs.

Source: Xinhua

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