Morocco is a country known for the diversification and efficiency of its arms suppliers. It is within this framework that the Royal Armed Forces have acquired and deployed Chinese-made unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in the Moroccan Sahara, reports the daily Al Ahdath in its Wednesday, February 15 edition.
These combat and reconnaissance drones, branded “Wing Loong II” (or Pterodactyl II), characterized by a medium cruising altitude and long autonomy, were acquired in 2022 and immediately deployed in the air base of Laayoune, the largest city in the Moroccan Sahara, located 450 km from the Algerian borders.
At least three prototypes of these drones, the exact number provided to Morocco was not specified. have been seen in Laayoune and are already operational.
According to Al Ahdath, Morocco has considerably strengthened its military capabilities in the south with these Chinese attack drones, which are added to its arsenal of unmanned aircraft, the largest and most diverse on the African continent. In addition to the new Chinese UAVs, this arsenal includes some 150 other unmanned aircraft, including Israeli-made ThunderBs and WanderBs, as well as Turkish-made Bayraktar TB2s.
As for the characteristics and performance of the “Wing Loong II”, Al Ahdath says that this drone, manufactured by the Chinese aircraft manufacturer, the “Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), is one of the best of its kind. Indeed, in addition to being able to carry 12 bombs or missiles guided by laser, it has a flight autonomy of 20 hours and a range of 1,500 km, at a speed of 370 km/h.