Russia deploys drone to monitor isles claimed by Japan

By Riyaz ul Khaliq

ANKARA (AA) – Russia has deployed a surveillance drone to watch a number of Tokyo-claimed islands off Japan's northernmost prefecture, media reports said Tuesday.

According to the Japan Times, the Russian military has deployed the surveillance drone to monitor two of the four Russian-controlled islands off the coast of Hokkaido prefecture.

The four islands have been controlled by Russia since World War II.

The two islands claimed by Japan are known as Etorofu and Kunashiri in Japanese and they host a Russian artillery unit.

The drone, called Orlan-10, is similar to one Russia uses for surveillance operations in Syria. The aircraft can operate within a 120-kilometer radius for up to 14 hours according to the Japan Times said.