TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - Commander of the IRGC’s Aerospace Division Amir-Ali Hajizadeh, made the remarks after a meeting with Iranian lawmakers at the Iranian parliament on Sunday.
Last week, Trump claimed that a US ship had shot down an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz.
Trump added that the USS Boxer fired on the drone last Thursday, four weeks after Iran shot down a US surveillance drone flying over Iranian waters near the Strait of Hormuz.
“The Boxer took defensive action against an Iranian drone, which had closed into a near distance, approximately 1000 yards, ignoring multiple calls to stand down threatening safety of ship and ship’s crew,” he said at the White House on the same day, claiming that Iran’s drone “was immediately destroyed.”
“The lie told by Trump was so big that we believed it at first that they had been able to shoot down one of our drones,” Hajizadeh said.
“After Trump's allegation about downing an Iranian drone, we checked with various [Iranian military] units several times…because we could not believe that he would tell such a big lie to the media himself,” the IRGC commander added.
Hajizadeh then said, “This is why we waited a few hours before rejecting the news and finally noticed that out unmanned aerial vehicle had monitored the activity of the [American] strike group before reaching the Strait of Hormuz and after getting out of it.”
The Iranian commander then noted that the Americans then blamed Trump's hawkish national security advisor for the lie.
A few hours after Trump's allegation, Iran moved to reject his claim with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyyed Abbas Araqchi saying in a tweet, ““We have not lost any drone in the Strait of Hormuz nor anywhere else.”
He added, ““I am worried that USS Boxer has shot down their own UAS by mistake!”
Later on Friday, a spokesman for the Iranian Armed Forces also rejected the US president’s claim, saying the claim is aimed at creating tension and disrupting security in the strategic waterway.
"Unlike Trump’s delusional and groundless claim, all drones belonging to the Islamic Republic of Iran in the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, including the one mentioned by the US president, have returned to their bases safe and sound after carrying out their scheduled surveillance and control operations,” Brigadier General Abolfazl Shekarchi said.
Trump's claim came almost a month after the IRGC shot down an intruding American spy drone in the country’s southern coastal province of Hormozgan.