BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:30 P.M.) – A Russian jet flew within 7 meters of a U.S. spy plane that was flying towards the Syrian coastline last week, the Russian publication Avia.Pro reported, citing the Popular Mechanics news site.
According to the report, the Russian Su-35, which was deployed to intercept a U.S. Navy P-8 Poseidon aircraft, flew within 7-8 meters of the the spy plane.
“The Su-35 flew only 7-8 meters from the American aircraft in an inverted position. According to the U.S. Navy, the P-8A Poseidon crew struggled to cope with turbulence due to the close passage of the fighter,” the publication quoted Popular Mechanics as saying.
“It was found that the passage was unsafe due to the fact that the Su-35 conducted a high-speed maneuver at a distance of 25 feet directly in front of the mission aircraft, which endangered our pilots and crew,” the US military said in a statement.
Popular Mechanics cited the U.S. Navy as saying, “we expect that they [Russian pilots] will behave in accordance with international standards established to ensure safety and prevent incidents.”
The Russian Ministry of Defense has yet to comment on this incident, which was condemned by officials in Washington.