News World The US blames Russia for the crash of a drone in the...

The US blames Russia for the crash of a drone in the Black Sea

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The United States reported this Tuesday that one of its drones fell over the Black Sea after colliding with a Russian fighter when it was flying over international airspace, but the Kremlin indicated that the unmanned aircraft collapsed due to “a sudden maneuver” when it was identified when It was heading towards Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula annexed in 2014 by Moscow.

“Our MQ-9 aircraft was conducting routine operations in international airspace when it was intercepted and struck by a Russian aircraft, resulting in a crash and the total loss of the MQ-9.”General James Hecker, commander of the US Air Force in Europe, said in a statement.

According to this version, the drone was intercepted by two Russian Su-27 fighters and one of those aircraft caused the incident, which would thus be the first direct contact between both military forces since the start of the offensive on Ukraine more than a year ago.

On several occasions, one of the Russian planes “dumped fuel” and flew in front of the drone “in an irresponsible, environmentally questionable and unprofessional manner.”

In the statement, General Hecker assured that the aircraft of the United States and its allies “they will continue to operate in international airspace, and we call on the Russians to behave safely and professionally”reported the AFP news agency.

“It is not uncommon… for Russian planes to intercept US planes over the Black Sea,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters, referring to the usual procedure of one plane making visual or electronic contact with another.

However, he stressed that this time “is noteworthy for how insecure and unprofessional it was, in fact it was reckless.”

Kirby said that US President Joe Biden had been briefed on the incident and that the State Department was going to express its concerns to Moscow.

The incident was recorded in the Black Sea
The incident was recorded in the Black Sea

In this sense, Washington summoned the Russian ambassador on Tuesday, according to the State Department.

“We are in direct contact with the Russians, again at higher levels, to convey our strong objection to this unprofessional and unsafe interception, which led to the downing of the US drone,” spokesman Ned Price said, calling the incident a “clear violation of international law.”

Russia rejected the version given by Washington: “At approximately 9:30 a.m. Moscow time (3:30 a.m. Argentina time), as a result of a sudden maneuver, an MQ-9 unmanned aerial vehicle made an uncontrolled flight, losing altitude, and collided with the surface of the water” reported the Ministry of Defense quoted by the Sputnik news agency.

The ministry noted that the Russian Aerospace Force detected the US drone while it was near Crimea and was heading towards the peninsula that Russia considers part of its territory.

In this sense, he assured that the US drone violated the border of the airspace used provisionally by Russia in the framework of its “special military operation”, of which Moscow informed all interested parties at the time in accordance with international standards.

For this reason, according to the Ministry of Defense, Russian aviation was forced to send its fighters in order to identify the offender.

The United States uses MQ-9 Reapers for both surveillance and strikes and has operated the drones in a variety of locations, including in the Middle East and Africa. Other countries, including the UK and France, also use them.

Several US MQ-9s have been lost in recent years, some to hostile action.

One was shot down in 2019 over Yemen with a surface-to-air missile fired by Houthi rebels, who also unsuccessfully fired at another of the drones a few days later, according to the US Central Command.

According to media reports, an American MQ-9 crashed in Libya in 2022, while another crashed during a training exercise in Romania earlier in the year, and another was lost in Libya in 2019.

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