Cuba Returns AWOL Missile to the USA

A Hellfire missile. Photo: Getty

HAVANA TIMES — The Cuban government confirmed Saturday the return to the United States of a air-to-ground missile that was used by NATO during maneuvers in Europe and ended up by mistake on the island.

In June 2014, Cuban customs discovered at the airport in Havana a rocket with a laser guided AGM 114 “Hellfire” missile on a commercial flight from Paris.

Once the United States officially announced its interest to recover the missile, the Cuban government “conveyed the decision to return it and diplomatic efforts began to make possible the delivery,” said an official note from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

A team of experts from the US government and Lockheed Martin, the manufacturer of the missile, traveled to the island to check its condition and on Saturday returned to the United States with the missile.

“Cuba acted with professionalism and transparency, and cooperated to find a satisfactory solution to this event,” stated the official text.

In early 2014, the missile was sent to Spain by Lockheed Martin to be used by the North Atlantic Treaty Organizaiton (NATO) in military maneuvers.

The “Hellfire” missile is often used on the Apache attack helicopters or on drones like the Predator, used to destroy tanks.

After its use it Europe the missile was supposed to be returned to the United States but never arrived.

Investigations by the US authorities determined that the missile was sent by mistake by the airline Air France which took it to Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris, where it was shipped on a flight to Cuba.

7 thoughts on “Cuba Returns AWOL Missile to the USA

  • My bet is that the Russians and the Chinese already had the technology. It’s the North Koreans who got the peek.

  • It’s sensor package was intact and as I understand it contained sensitive technology. You can bet your @ss that the Russians and Chinese took a peek inside!

  • Why would they keep it? Out of spite maybe? It was a fake missile anyway. It had no explosive capacity. They should have sent it back or let the US come and get it right away.

  • It was probably a good move politically to return it. I don’t know if they had any legal obligation to return it. There may not be many precedents for this unusual case.

  • jajajaja Now isn’t that the pot calling the kettle black?

  • I’m glad that a satisfactory conclusion came of this very embarrassing situation for the U.S. The SNL skit is all ready for next week’s show.

  • Of they should have returned it to the US. The question is why did it take so long?

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