The U.S. Army ordered units to halt the use of DJI drones, it was revealed last week, but officials still won't say why it banned the company's products. DJI told International Business Times it reached out to officials about the direction to discontinue the use of its drones, but the U.S. army did not respond to them. "The US Army has not explained why it suddenly banned the use of DJI drones and components, what'cyber vulnerabilities' it is concerned about, or whether it has also excluded drones made by other manufacturers," DJI said. In a letter obtained by sUAS News, the U.S. Army Research Lab and U.S. Navy found there were operational risks associated with DJI products. The memo cited a classified report, "DJI UAS Technology Threat and User Vulnerabilities," and a U.S. Navy memo, "Operational Risks with Regards to DJI Family of Products."
The move was the second time in a week that it shot down a pro-Syrian government aircraft in the sky. "The armed pro-regime Shaheed-129 UAV was shot down by a U.S. F-15E Strike Eagle at approximately 12:30 a.m. Carla Babb, the Pentagon correspondent for Voice of America (VOA) tweeted Tuesday saying the sources have confirmed that the Iranian-made drone shot down by the U.S. fighter jet was being operated by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps. Pentagon spokesman Navy Captain Jeff Davis said the U.S. military shot down the Shahed 129 as it approached an established coalition combat outpost near al-Tanf in southeast Syria, where the U.S. is holding training sessions for local fighters against the Islamic State group, VOA reported. Officials also said that the shot Iranian aircraft was the same type of drone that a U.S. warplane had shot down June 8 after it attacked U.S.-backed fighters in southern Syria.
In order to counter the growing nuclear threat from North Korea in the Korean Peninsula, the U.S. is expected to deploy an unmanned aircraft system to South Korea, Yonhap News Agency reported Monday, citing a Seoul military official. The attack drone will be deployed to strengthen strike capabilities against ground targets in the North, the official told the South Korean news agency. The Gray Eagle aircraft will be deployed to a U.S. military base in the southwestern town of Gunsan -- about 111 miles south of Seoul, the report said. However, it is still unclear when the system will be installed. The Gray Eagle is capable of striking military facilities in the north of the Military Demarcation Line separating the two Koreas, the official told Yonhap.
China and Russia said Monday that the South China Sea dispute should not be internationalized and called for its settlement based on negotiation and consultation, Beijing's official Xinhua News reported. The comments come at time when the United States has beefed up its military presence in the contested region in a bid to help the Philippines and other Southeast Asian countries tackle China's assertiveness. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov made the comments during a meeting on Monday. Wang insisted that China was protecting its rights and interests in South China Sea, and was free to choose how to resolve tensions in the area, Xinhua reported. The world's second largest economy's refusal of the Philippines' proposed international arbitration case over the matter was meant to uphold the dignity and authority of the law, Wang said, adding that China and Russia should be cautious against abuses of mandatory arbitration.