Russian planes buzzed United States warship in Black Sea, defense official says

Posted February 16, 2017

The Pentagon says Russian aircraft flew low and fast above an American destroyer in the Black Sea last week in an "unsafe and unprofessional" manner and a Russian intelligence vessel has been detected heading north along the eastern coast of the United States.

The second incident involved two SU-24 fighters and the third a different Su-24. USA destroyer, USS Porter (L) and the Romanian naval ship ROS Marcellariu transit through the Black Sea during an exercise on July 14, 2015. The U.S. vessel did not take any evasive action.

Konashenkov said all Russian "flights were conducted and are being conducted over the neutral waters of the Black Sea in accordance with global rules and safety requirements".

"These incidents are always concerning because they could result in miscalculation or accident", he said.

Gen. Igor Konashenkov said in a statement, "There were no incidents related to a flyby of Russian military aircraft near the USS Porter destroyer in the Black Sea on February 10".

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US Defense Department spokesperson Michelle Baldanza said the incidents were deemed "unsafe and unprofessional", pointing out that the Russian aircraft did not have their transponders on.

In 2016, asked about a Russian fighter jet barrel-rolling next to a U.S. ship, Donald Trump suggested the Navy has "gotta shoot" if Vladimir Putin ignored calls to stop.

A defense official made clear to USNI News that while the February 10 met the threshold of being considered unsafe it wasn't in the same league as the April Donald Cook incident. U.S. participation "demonstrates the commitment to deploying leading technology and combat capability in support of allies and partners and collective defense of the Black Sea region", the U.S. Navy reported.

Two Russian Sukhoi Su-24 attack aircraft fly over the USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) April 12, 2016.

Russian planes buzzed a United States warship in the Black Sea as it was conducting North Atlantic Treaty Organisation exercises, American officials said.