Russia Denied US Charges That Russian Jet Intercepted American Drone

According to reports, the U.S. Air Forces Command in Europe and Africa released a statement on March 14th, claiming Russian jet intercepted American drone over Black Sea at 7:03 a.m. local time.

According to the statement, two Russian fighter planes intercepted an American MQ-9 Reaper drone on a reconnaissance mission over the Black Sea and that the Russian aircraft dumped fuel on the drone several times and made unsafe flight intentionally.

One of the Russian jets struck the propeller of the U.S. drone, causing the drone to crash in the Black Sea. The U.S. condemned the Russian actions as “unprofessional, unsafe and reckless”, warning that such provocative actions could lead to miscalculation and accidental escalation.

“In fact, this unsafe and unprofessional act by the Russians nearly caused both aircrafts to crash,” U.S. Air Force General James Hecker, commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Africa, said in the statement. However, the Russian Defense Ministry denied the claim, saying that the Russian fighter jets did not use any weapons and did not make direct contact with the drone, and that the Russian aircraft safely returned to their air base.

Ned Price, spokesman for U.S. State Department, called the incident a “flagrant violation of international law” and summoned Russian Ambassador Antonov to the US to express his protest. Also, he conveyed U.S objections to Russia through U.S. Ambassador in Russia, Tracy Lynne.

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