It was reported that the first units of Bayraktar TB2 armed unmanned aerial vehicles (SİHA) were delivered to Morocco in the past weeks.
It was announced that the Royal Moroccan Armed Forces (Far-Maroc) signed an agreement with Baykar Defense for 2021 Bayraktar TB626 SİHAs worth 70 million Moroccan dirhams (13 million dollars) in April 2. This information, which has not yet been confirmed by Baykar Defense, is believed to be correct.
It is reported that the agreement covers 4 ground stations, 1 simulation system and a digital system for information monitoring and storage. In addition, an unmanned aerial vehicle operation center will be established in one of the military bases of the Royal Moroccan Armed Forces.
Local Moroccan news sites reported that deliveries began on 17 September, citing Far-Maroc on their online forum specializing in military news.
Ban on export of drone components from Canada to Turkey
Canada has suspended the export of unmanned aerial vehicle subsystems technology to Turkey after it found that some of the locally manufactured systems were used in the Nagorno-Karabakh war and in Syria.
Although it is not known whether the drones allegedly delivered to the Royal Moroccan Armed Forces are vehicles produced before Canada's export ban, it is claimed that Morocco directly purchased Electro-Optical Sensors for Bayraktar TB2 SİHAs from Canada.
The dispute between Morocco and Algeria
Although Morocco, a North African country, has previously used unmanned aerial vehicles for surveillance, recent developments and agreements show that its air force may have used combat drones in air-to-ground operations.
Morocco and Algeria have long been at odds, especially over Western Sahara, a former Spanish colony that Morocco sees as an integral part of its territory, but Algeria's Polisario Front is where it supports the independence movement. In April 2021, a Moroccan Air Force drone was used as part of an airstrike against elements of the Polisario Front in the Western Sahara region.
The Moroccan army already has unmanned aerial vehicles such as the French Heron (Harfang: Developed together with IAI based on the Heron unmanned aerial vehicle). They are also purchasing MQ-9B SeaGuardian drones from the United States.