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Iranian fighter jet crashes in tense Gulf region Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Iranian fighter jet crashes in tense Gulf region

The purpose of Sunday's flight was not immediately clear. [Getty]

Date of publication: 5 August, 2019

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Decades of Western sanctions have made it hard to maintain Iran's aging fleet of military aircraft.

Iran says a fighter jet has gone down in the south of the country near the tense Gulf region, with two pilots surviving the crash.

The semi-official Mehr news agency quoted a local official as saying the crash was caused by a technical problem.

"The fighter jet crashed due to technical issues in the Tangestan area. Its pilot and co-pilot are safe," Mehr quoted the governor of Tangestan Abdolhossein Rafiipour as saying.

The purpose of Sunday's flight was not immediately clear. Regular patrol flights are common in the region.

Iran's air force has an assortment of US-made military aircraft purchased before the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

It also has Russian-made MiG and Sukhoi planes. Decades of Western sanctions have made it hard to maintain the aging fleet.

Tensions in the region have soared since the Trump administration began stepping up a US campaign of "maximum pressure" against Iran, with drones downed and tankers mysteriously attacked in Gulf waters.

Agencies contributed to this report.

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