A Russian Su-35 has conducted a second “unsafe” intercept of a US surveillance jet in the Mediterranean in four days, flying once again within just 25 feet of a P-8A Poseidon, the US Navy said in a statement.
“On Apr. 19, 2020, a US Navy P-8A aircraft flying in international airspace over the Mediterranean Sea was intercepted twice by a Russian SU-35 over a period of 100 minutes. The first intercept was deemed safe and professional. The second intercept was determined to be unsafe and unprofessional due to the SU-35 conducting a high-speed, high-powered maneuver that decreased aircraft separation to within 25 feet, directly in front of the P-8A, exposing the US aircraft to wake turbulence and jet exhaust”, the US Sixth Fleet said late on Sunday, according to Russian Sputnik.
A Russian Su-35 fighter jet detected a US military reconnaissance aircraft flying toward Russian military facilities in Syria, the Ministry of Defense has announced.
The incident, said to have taken place Sunday, took place after a fighter was scrambled from the Hemeimeem airbase to confront an identified aerial target that was heading towards Russian positions in Syria. The unidentified aircraft turned out to have been a US Navy plane, the MoD said.
“After approaching the aircraft, the pilot of the Russian fighter identified the plane’s tail number and its status as an aircraft of the US Navy, and took it under escort,” the MoD added. After being tagged, the US reconnaissance aircraft was said to have changed course, allowing the Russian fighter plane to return to base.
The Russian military emphasized that all Aerospace Forces flights take place in strict accordance with international rules of airspace use over neutral waters.
According to the US Navy, despite the fact that the Su-35 was operating in international airspace, the interaction was “irresponsible” and endangered the safety of both aircraft.
“In both cases, the US aircraft were operating consistent with international law and did not provoke this Russian activity”, the statement added.
The American jet had to descend to “create separation and ensure the safety of both aircraft”, the Navy added, noting that the incident followed “the Apr. 15, 2020, interaction over the same waters, where a Russian SU-35 flew inverted within 25 feet of the US P-8A”.
The Russian military has yet to comment on the incident.
This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.