US releases photos of Russian jet intercept over Baltic Sea

The US military has released dramatic photos showing what it calls a Russian fighter jet’s “unsafe” intercept of an American spy plane over the Baltic Sea.

The photos came out on Thursday, five days after the Pentagon announced that a Russian Sukhoi Su-27 aircraft had flown within only 1.5 meters (five feet) of a US Air Force RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft over the Baltic Sea.

A US official told CNN that the Russian jet was carrying weapons and flew “erratically,” noting that the maneuvers were specially unsafe because of the proximity.

“Due to the high rate of closure speed and poor control of the (Russian) aircraft during the intercept, this interaction was determined to be unsafe,” said Meghan Henderson, a spokesperson for US European Command.

In the photos, the alleged Su-27 is flying so close to the wings of the spy plane that its pilot can be seen clearly in the cockpit.

Russia has rejected claims that that its jet was at fault,…

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