Russian fighter jet performs 'unsafe' 24-minute intercept of U.S. aircraft

Saul Bowman
November 29, 2017

After the US accused Russia of buzzing one of its jets in an "unsafe" way over the Black Sea, a decorated Russian general has fired back, saying American airmen had no business flying in these European waters to begin with.

The U.S. P-8A Poseidon did nothing to provoke the maneuver, defense spokesperson Michelle Baldanza told the Daily News.

The tense incident occurred when the Russian Su-30 flew in front of the U.S. plane from left to right, causing it to enter its jet wash and roll 15 degrees.

On Saturday, a U.S. Navy P-8A Poseidon was flying in global airspace over the Black Sea when it was intercepted by a Russian SU-30, Eucom spokeswoman Meghan Henderson said. It is reported that the incident lasted for around 24 minutes. Russian Federation has access to the Black Sea but so do three US allies, as well as occasional military training partners Ukraine and Georgia.

A US Navy P-8A Poseidon anti-submarine warfare aircraft was intercepted by a Russian Air Force Su-30 Flanker fighter jet on November 25.

During the last months, similar incidents were registered in the zone of the Baltic Sea and near the Russian western enclave of Kaliningrad, in the Kamchatka peninsula, near the USA state of Alaska and in other regions.

"This interaction was determined to be unsafe", Henderson said in the emailed statement. The Navy aircraft had its transponder on and was conducting "routine operations in worldwide airspace". After the spy plane was intercepted by the Russian Air Force, the U.S. aircraft changed course and flew away. This forced the USA aircraft to undergo a 15-degree roll and experience aggressive turbulence. "Unsafe actions‎ have the potential to cause serious harm and injury to all air crews involved".

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