Russian aircraft have reportedly flown directly over a US Navy vessel in the Baltic Sea in what is being described as one of the most aggressive actions in recent history.
On Monday, Russian fighter jets made 20 passes over USS Donald Cook at an altitude of 100 feet as the ship left the Polish port of Gdynia in the Baltic Sea.
According to CBS, a senior defense official said this is the second Russian provocation of this type this week.
A second incident involving two Russian KA-27 Helix helicopters and two Sukhoi Russian SU-24 jets reportedly occurred yesterday.
The helicopters apparently flew circles around the USS Donald Cook while taking pictures. After the helicopters left the scene two Russian Su-24s repeatedly flew within 30 meters of the guided missile destroyer, according to US officials.
“They were so close they created wakes in the water,” an official said.
Sailors aboard the Donald Cook reported that the aircraft did not have any visible bombs or armaments.
The nature of the overflight as a “simulated attack” may violate a 1973 treaty between the U.S. and Russia that specifically prohibits this type of maneuver, a defense official told Military Times.
According to the Military Times, defense officials spoke on condition of anonymity because U.S. officials have not officially disclosed the incidents.
Since then, three videos of the Russian SU-24s conducting the “simulated attack” have been released by United State European Command.
In a statement, the U.S. European Command said: “We have deep concerns about the unsafe and unprofessional Russian flight maneuvers. These actions have the potential to unnecessarily escalate tensions between countries, and could result in a miscalculation or accident that could cause serious injury or death.”
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