Russian Jet Spotted Near US Aircraft, Flew Within 20 Feet

Russian Jet Spotted Near US Aircraft, Flew Within 20 Feet

A Russian fighter aircraft intercepted an American reconnaissance aircraft in neutral waters over the Black Sea on 9 May, the Russian Defense Ministry said on 12 May. 

A US military surveillance aircraft was detected by Russian radars on the morning of 9 May over the neutral waters of the Black Sea. A SU-30 fighter was sent to intercept and divert him as he approached the borders of the Russian Federation, the Russian Defense said in a statement.

“After approaching the aircraft at a safe distance, the Russian pilot identified the flying object as a US P-8A Poseidon surveillance aircraft,” said the Russian Army Press Service .

The Russian pilot “greeted” the US aircraft with a special maneuver, following which the Poseidon diverted its course, Moscow explained, adding that the plane had returned to its base after the operation.

US television said she had a SU-27 fighter approaching seven meters from the surveillance device. US naval spokesman Pamela Kunze said the operation, which took place in international airspace, was a routine mission. Most of the interactions [with Russian aircraft] are done “safely and professionally,” she added.

The incident took place a week after the United States intercepted Russian combat aircraft during a routine mission near Alaska. The US authorities described the interception as “non-problematic,” adding that 60 such incidents have occurred since 2007.


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