US drone collides with Russian warplane in Black Sea

US drone collides with Russian warplane in Black Sea

According to a Pentagon statement, the drone was flying “on a routine mission” in international airspace over the Black Sea when it was intercepted by two Russian Su-27 fighter jets. One of the fighter jets reportedly struck the drone’s propeller with its wing.

The US Air Force says the collision was the result of “unprofessional conduct by the Russians”. Before the collision, Su-27 fighter jets repeatedly dumped fuel on the drone, according to the Pentagon, which speaks of “an irresponsible, climate-unfriendly and unprofessional” operation.

A White House spokesman said such intercepts are common, but the drone crash was “unique”. President Biden has been briefed on the incident. The US State Department has contacted Moscow about this.

form of dangerous acts

Russia has denied the allegations. According to a statement from the Russian Defense Ministry, there was no collision, but the drone swerved sharply downwards to crash into the sea. Moscow also accuses the United States of flying the drone toward the Russian border near the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea, which was annexed by Russia in February 2014.

Russian Ambassador Anatoly Antonov, who has been held accountable by the US government, says Russia sees the incident as a provocation but says the country does not expect a confrontation with the US.

According to the U.S. military, “Russian pilots have a pattern of dangerous actions when interacting with U.S. and allied aircraft in international airspace.” These “lead to miscalculation and accidental escalation.”

‘No more conflict’

NATO diplomats in Brussels confirmed the incident but said it was not expected to lead to further conflict. The alliance’s top military commander has informed NATO member states.

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A Pentagon spokesman did not say whether the Defense Department would try to recover the drone, but noted that Russia had not done so in any case. America has no warships in the Black Sea.

The MQ-9 Reaper drone is a 20-meter-long unmanned aerial vehicle designed for high-altitude surveillance. The US has indicated that it will continue such routine missions in the airspace.

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