Iran’s copy of a U.S. drone aircraft captured in 2011 is inferior to the American original, the Pentagon said on Wednesday, as it downplayed claims from Tehran this week that the replica had taken its first flight.

Asked about the Iranian replica, Pentagon spokesman Colonel Steve Warren quipped: “Replica being the operative word there.”

“There is no way it matches American technology,” Warren told a news briefing. He did not cite evidence to back up his assertion. […]