War Drones Weekly Roundup (Dec 19th)

War Drones is Drone Dossier’s weekly roundup of new stories related to military drones.

  • China has agreed to return the underwater US drone they seized in intentional waters off the Philippines. Chinese and American officials are working on the details how when and how this will happen. UPDATE: The US Navy confirms China has returned the drone to the US in international waters early Tuesday.
  • A Hamas-linked Tunisian drone export was assassinated last week. The man’s relatives claim he as killed by Mossad due to his work building drones and teaching people to fly them in Palestine.
  • A recent report from Market Forecast projects that worldwide military spending on drones will be $34.6 billion from 2016 to 2022.
  • US Office of Naval Research (ONR) is developing unmanned ‘swarmboats’ which can identify intruding vessels and then swarm around them to attack or prevent entry to coastal waterways and access points.
  • South Korea media is reporting that North Korea is developing long range drones with better capabilities to carry armaments.
  • Northrop is developing a new ship-based combat drone that has better range than carrier-based strike fighters like the F-18 and the brand new F-35. The new TERN drone will have vertical takeoff and landing capability and a range of 600 nautical miles.
  • The British paper ‘The Telegraph is reporting that Iraqi forces trying to liberate the city of Mosul from Islamic State fighters and being harassed and even bombed by ISIS drones.

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