Morocco Makes History as North Africa and Middle East’s First Drone Manufacturer

Morocco Makes History as North Africa and Middle East’s First Drone Manufacturer

According to claims by El Español and I24News, Morocco has joined the club of drone producers after becoming the first nation in North Africa and the Middle East, after Israel, to manufacture advanced suicide drones.

The Israeli weapons manufacturer BlueBird, a division of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) that specializes in the creation, development, and production of drones, reportedly carried out the first field test of its brand-new SpyX suicide drone in Morocco, according to report. This drone is part of the Royal Moroccan Armed Forces (FAR), and a video that was uploaded to BlueBird’s website shows that the experimental mission was considered a huge success.

El Español newspaper described the mission as an attack on a retired FAR Ratel armored personnel carrier. The drone reached its target and collided with an armored vehicle, causing an explosion.

Designed for reconnaissance and attack missions, the SpyX drone has a range of 50 kilometers and can be used for one and a half hours.

According to both newspapers, its range and autonomy offer many operational advantages, thanks to its target recognition system and dual sun/thermal sensors. The aircraft can also reach enemies and targets at speeds of 250 kilometers per hour and can be carried and operated by a crew of two soldiers.

According to report, Israeli media first reported seeing these drones in Morocco in June 2023. This suggests that the FAR tested the drones before acquiring them in large quantities, becoming the first army to use this kind of drone following BlueBird’s introduction of them only a few months earlier.

El Español and I24News both claim that Morocco ordered 150 WanderB and ThunderB drones from BlueBird in September 2022. Newspaper further stated that Morocco asked Israel for two Ofek-13 reconnaissance satellites that same month in order to bolster and update its intelligence and surveillance capabilities.

At the same time, King Mohammed VI ordered: Recently, he announced the delivery of emergency humanitarian aid consisting of 30 tons of essential food and 10 tons of emergency medicine and blankets to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

According to El Español, Morocco considers it a religious and fraternal obligation to support the Palestinians while maintaining relations with Israel for territorial unity and economic development.

Rabat always refers to the “reestablishment of diplomatic relations” with Israel, and not to normalization, which has been in effect since December 2020, the newspaper explained.

Although the liaison office has reopened but without a full diplomatic service representative, Tel Aviv recognized Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara in July 2023 as part of an agreement with then-President Donald Trump.

Topics #First Drone Manufacturer #Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) #Middle East #Morocco #North Africa

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