Tehran: Iran made a formal protest on Thursday over a US drone entering "deep" into its eastern airspace last week, and aired footage of what appeared to be the downed aircraft on state television.
      
Swiss ambassador Livia Leu Agosti was summoned to the Foreign Ministry and told the incident suggests Washington has upped its "provocative and covert actions" against the Islamic regime, the state television website reported.
      
The Swiss embassy handles US interests in the absence of Iran-US diplomatic ties.
      
Iran "strongly protests the violation of an RQ-170 spy aircraft deep into its airspace," the report said, adding that Tehran asked for "an urgent response and compensation from the US government."
   
It did not elaborate.
   
Iranian media said late Sunday an RQ-170 unmanned aerial vehicle was shot down after making an incursion slightly into Iranian airspace. But no precise indication has been given by Iranian officials on where it crashed.
      
US media said the drone crashed in eastern Iran probably due to malfunction.
   
The RQ-170 Sentinel is a high-altitude stealth reconnaissance drone made by Lockheed Martin, whose existence was exposed in 2009 by specialised reviews and later confirmed by the US Air Force in 2010.
   
On Thursday, Iran's foreign ministry said in a written complaint passed on to the Swiss ambassador that it holds "the US government fully responsible for this action, which is against all known international laws and regulations."

(Agencies)