Russian fighter jets provoke US spy plane over the Black Sea

US defense officials claim that Russian Sukhoi fighter jets came within 3 meters or 9.8 feet of a US surveillance plane that was flying over the Black Sea. According to the officials, the maneuver was carried out in an unsafe manner and endangered their aircraft. Russia claimed that it had followed international law.
The US spy plane P8 Poseidon Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

A Russian fighter jet came within 9.8 feet (3 meters) of the P8 Poseidon US surveillance plane in an “unsafe and unprofessional” manner as the US aircraft was patrolling over the Black Sea, two US defense officials told Reuters. “The aircraft operated in accordance with international law,” said the Russian Ministry of Defense.

According to the Russian Ministry of Defense, Sukhoi fighter jets were scrambled over the Black Sea in order to intercept an aircraft circling in the area. “The pilots tried to make contact with the aircraft twice but did not receive any response,” the statement said. “After the Russian pilots closed in on the surveillance plane in order to identify the license number, the aircraft quickly changed its direction.”

Continued tensions between the US and Russia Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

Furthermore, the Russian Ministry of Defense stated that this is “not the first time” that NATO members’ aircraft have attempted to get close to its country’s borders in order to spy on its military forces stationed along the Ukrainian border.

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