Capt. Capt. Urban, the spokesperson for U.S. Central Command said that two unmanned aerial systems (UAS), were detected entering the airspace surrounding At Tanf Garrison on Tuesday night. Urban stated that one of the UAS had continued to enter the At Tanf Deconfliction zone, and it was deemed hostile intent. It was then shot down.
According to a US defense official a British Typhoon jet shot the incoming drone down using an advanced short range air to air missile (ASRAAM). This was the first time a heat-seeking, air-to-air missile has been used in combat situations to eliminate a threatening drone.
The second small drone turned around and fled the area. It is unknown if the drones were equipped with explosives.
Urban stated that there had been no reports of injuries or damages to the base.
This incident follows a coordinated attack on At Tanf Garrison, which included a group drones packed with explosives and rocket fire. Defense officials claim that the facilities suffered severe damage, although no U.S. troops were hurt or killed.
Defense officials claim that Iran or Iranian-backed militias are responsible for Tuesday’s drone attack and earlier attack.
At Tanf Garrison can be found in strategic areas near the Jordanian and Iraqi borders. It includes a road which allows Iranian-backed militias access to all of Lebanon, from Tehran. The U.S. troops stationed at the base train Syrian opposition fighters to defeat ISIS in the region.