A close encounter occurred involving a Russian fighter jet and a U.S. military reconnaissance aircraft late final month in international airspace more than the Black Sea, U.S. military officials confirmed to ABC News.
Pentagon Spokesman Col. Steve Warren right now called it “an unsafe intercept” saying it was accomplished in an “unprofessional and inappropriate” manner.
On May perhaps 30, two Russian Sukhoi Su-27 fighter jet performed separate intercepts of a large U.S. RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft. According to Warren, the first of the two intercepts came dangerously close when the Russian pilot cam behind the American plane, passed underneath it and then passed it on the correct hand side.
Warren mentioned it was unclear if the jet was intentionally conducting a dangerous maneuver or if it was perhaps a common “lack of training” on behalf of the Russian pilot.
“The purpose is concerns us is that these unsafe intercepts can lead to accidents and potentially tragedy or miscalculations of some sort and that is not what we want to see,” Warren stated.
The U.S. has filed a formal complaint with the Russians.
In April, there was a equivalent incident also involving a Russian fighter jet and a U.S. military reconnaissance aircraft more than the Baltic Sea. The United States accused the Russian pilot of producing numerous passes, at the time calling it “unsafe and unprofessional.” Even though the U.S. filed a formal protest, the Russians denied any wrongdoing.
Earlier this month, the Pentagon released video of a Russian fighter generating a low-level pass at a U.S. Navy destroyer, also in the Black Sea.