South African forces retrieve crashed UN peacekeeping Falco Evo drone

Personnel of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has retrieved a Falco Evo unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) operated by the United Nations Stabilisation Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (Monusco) that crashed last week.

The Falco Evo drone (UN897) crashed in Virunga National Park, eastern DRC on 4 November, and was located by the community locals.

South African National Defence Force (SANDF) soldiers deployed with Monusco forces retrieves the drone, which was transported by a South African Air Force (SAAF) Oryx helicopter back to Beni.

Lieutenant General Marcos de Sá Affonso da Costa, Monusco Force Commander, said on his official Twitter account that he was grateful to the military unit that facilitated the recovery of the aircraft.

“The drone was on a reconnaissance air mission when it developed a mechanical problem,” he stated.

The Falco EVO is an all-weather, persistent-surveillance, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) produced by Leonardo-Finmeccanica (formerly SELEX ES).

Selex ES supplied a Falco Evo unmanned air system to support UN peacekeeping operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo, under a five-year contract.

Drones under MONUSCO are routinely tasked to support the protection of civilians, monitor illegal Armed Groups and observe humanitarian aid convoy.

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