The Russian Defense Ministry rejected criticism by the US European Command that a Russian fighter jet performed aggressive maneuvers near a US reconnaissance plane over the Baltic, Reuters reports.
On Thursday, a Russian Su-27 fighter ‘performed erratic and aggressive maneuvers’, flying within 15 meters of a U.S. RC-135 aircraft, Reuters quotes U.S. European Command spokesman Danny Hernandez as saying.
“The unsafe and unprofessional actions of a single pilot have the potential to unnecessarily escalate tensions between countries,” he said.
Russia dismissed the report as ‘running counter to reality’, saying its air defenses had to scramble a fighter jet after detecting a high-speed unidentified target over the Baltic Sea heading for its borders. After making "visual contact" with the Russian Su-27, the American reconnaissance plane changed its course away from Russia's borders.
That incident occurred just two days after two Russian Su-24 bombers buzzed the Donald Cook, a U.S. guided missile destroyer, in the Baltic Sea on Tuesday, simulating attack passes, with a U.S. military official describing them as one of the most aggressive interactions in recent memory.