Taliban Seizes Afghan Military’s Boeing ScanEagle Drone

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A day after Taliban fighters took control of India-gifted Mi-35 attack helicopter operated by the Afghanistan military, reports arose that claimed that the latter lost a ScanEagle drone produced by Boeing to them.

On Thursday, Oryx Blog reported that the Taliban managed to get its hands on the drone after it was left behind by the Afghan Army in Kunduz.

Afghanistan has many of these UAVs in its inventory. The latest FMS order for 15 ScanEagles for the country was placed in November 2020. An initial order for 65 UAVs was placed in 2015 for $70.9 million, followed by subsequent orders for five in 2017 and 35 in 2018.

The ScanEagle UAV is 5.1 feet long with a 5.6-foot wingspan. It weighs as much as 48.5 pounds and can carry a 7.5-pound sensor payload. The UAV can fly for more than 24 hours at altitudes as high as 19.500 feet, and at speeds to 80 knots.