For use in drone incident: Kremlin honors fighter jet pilots

For use in drone incident
Kremlin honors fighter jet pilots

A few days ago, Russian fighter jets brought down a US military drone over the Black Sea. The incident once again significantly increased tensions between Washington and Moscow. Russia walks away from any responsibility – and now even honors the pilots involved.

The Russian Defense Ministry has awarded the pilots involved in the incident involving a US reconnaissance drone over the Black Sea. Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu presented state awards to the fighter jet pilots “who prevented an American MQ-9 drone from violating” Russia’s “temporary airspace,” the Defense Ministry said in Moscow. The military incident has significantly increased tensions between Washington and Moscow.

According to US information, the drone collided with a Russian fighter jet in international airspace over the Black Sea on Tuesday. The US military said two Russian Su-27s had begun an intercept maneuver. One of the fighter jets hit the propeller of the US drone. The USA complained that the Russian pilots acted “unprofessionally”, “unsafely” and “recklessly”. Washington released video of the incident on Thursday.

Russia denies any responsibility

Meanwhile, Russia’s Defense Ministry denied any responsibility for the crash and said the drone had rapidly lost altitude during a sharp evasive maneuver and crashed. Moscow insists that it has closed the Black Sea airspace in the area because of its war against Ukraine – what Moscow officially calls it a “military special operation” – and has announced this at the international level.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the incident would not have happened if “those who are not entitled to it” had not flown there. Moscow also confirmed that the pilots “did not use any weapons on board, did not come into contact with the drone and returned safely to their home airport”.

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev even declared the unilaterally closed airspace on his Telegram channel as a “part of our territory to which our sovereignty extends”. Accordingly, it would be wrong to be “squeamish” about the Americans.

source site-34