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02 February 2018, 09:13 | Colleen Roy
Additional Video Released of U.S. Navy EP-3 Intercepted in the Black Sea | U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa / U.S. 6th
The encounter, first reported by Russia's RIA news agency, cited the defence ministry as saying the US Navy aircraft, an??-3E Aries II plane, did not violate Russian air space, reports Reuters.
In this still image taken from footage shared by U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet, a Russian Sukhoi Su-27 fighter jet passes near a U.S. Navy EP-3 spy plane over the Black Sea near Crimea, January 29, 2018.
In November, a Russian Su-30 fighter flew as close as 50 feet before turning on its afterburners while intercepting a US Navy P-8A Poseidon anti-submarine warfare aircraft over the same area, and in December, two US Air Force F-22s were intercepted by Russian Su-25 and Su-35 jets.
Russia's defense ministry on Thursday responded to the U.S. Navy following the United States' increasingly specific accusations of an "unsafe" intercept over the Black Sea on Monday, saying the U.S. needs to recognize Russia's sovereignty over Crimea.
The Ministry suggested, however, that the USA should stop flying in global airspace near the Russian border just to be sure, because American pilots are suffering from "depression and phobias". The A Su-27 fighter was dispatched to seize the target and after two hours and 40 minutes, the US surveillance plane was intercepted.
The five clips, lasting 6-11 seconds each, apparently show the US Navy aircraft and the Russian warplane shadowing it.
"We have paid attention to continuing attempts by American partners to make a noise about what is broadly speaking routine incidents of mutual escorting", the ministry said in a commentary on Thursday.
The U.S. State Department protested the maneuver as "an unsafe interaction".
Capt. Pamela Kunze, the US Naval Forces Europe says, "Unsafe actions increase the risk of miscalculation and midair collisions". "For the Russian fighter aircraft to fly this close to the US Navy aircraft, especially for extended periods of time, is unsafe". "The Russian Su-27 then proceeded to enter the flight path of the U.S. Navy EP-3, crossing within 10 feet and executing a sharp dive below, which resulted in violent turbulence for the U.S. EP-3 and its crew members".
"The smallest lapse of focus or error in airmanship by the intercepting aircrew can have disastrous consequences, Ellis said".
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