- The US military has spotted a Chinese spy balloon over northern US.
- The Pentagon said the balloon was spotted on Wednesday over the state of Montana in the northwest of the country.
- It should not have been the first incident of this kind in the airspace over the USA.
The trajectory of the balloon is being closely monitored, the Pentagon said. He is still over the United States. Shooting him down was considered, but decided against due to the danger of falling debris.
“Sure balloon comes from China”
After the discovery of the balloon, the government took immediate action to prevent the disclosure of sensitive information, Pentagon spokesman Pat Ryder said. One is sure that the balloon comes from China.
Similar incidents have happened in the past. The difference this time is that the balloon stays longer than usual over the United States. The balloon poses no military threat or danger to people on the ground, Ryder said.
According to the Pentagon, the balloon is harmless to aircraft due to its high altitude. The US is in contact with China about the incident.
China’s government says it is investigating reports of the spy balloon and warns against hasty speculation. “We collect and check the facts,” said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning in Beijing. “We hope that both sides will treat the matter with a cool head.”
“The intent of this balloon is clearly intelligence gathering,” a senior US defense official, who declined to be named, said of the operation. Washington has also observed the balloon with manned US military aircraft since it appeared in American airspace.
Canada also reports sightings
The Canadian Ministry of Defense announced on Thursday that it had also discovered a “high-altitude surveillance balloon”. In addition, one observes a “potential second incident.”
The Canadian secret services are in exchange with the “American partners”. Steps are being taken to ensure airspace safety, Canadian authorities said.