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June 1, 2015

Russia dispatches aircraft to monitor US warship in Black Sea

Russia dispatched its military aircraft to head off the US Navy's guided-missile destroyer USS Ross, which was reportedly moving along the edge of Russia's territorial waters.

By Samseer M

USS Ross

Russia dispatched its military aircraft to head off the US Navy’s guided-missile destroyer USS Ross, which was reportedly moving along the edge of Russia’s territorial waters.

State news agency RIA cited a Russian armed forces source as saying that the US warship was acting ‘aggressively’ in the Black Sea.

The source stated: "The crew of the ship acted provocatively and aggressively, which concerned the operators of monitoring stations and ships of the Black Sea fleet.

"Su-24 attack aircraft demonstrated to the American crew readiness to harshly prevent a violation of the frontier and to defend the interests of the country."

The is the latest in a series of similar incidents between Russian and Western militaries amid tensions over the Ukraine crisis and Russia’s annexation of the Crimea.

The Pentagon said that the Russian warplanes have made several passes, as close as 500m over the US destroyer, in recent days.

"Su-24 attack aircraft demonstrated to the American crew readiness to harshly prevent a violation of the frontier and to defend the interests of the country."

The US Department of Defense argued that the USS Ross was performing its routine operations within the international waters in accordance with international law.

The deployment of USS Ross to the Black Sea had been publicly announced.

In addition, the UK and Sweden have recently scrambled fighters to intercept Russian bombers near their territory.

Last month, the US unveiled plans to lodge a complaint to Russia over a fighter’s unsafe interception of its reconnaissance aircraft over the Baltic Sea.


Image: The US Navy’s Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Ross. Photo: courtesy of US Navy photo by photographer’s mate Second-class Michael Sandberg.

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