The Pentagon said a Chinese fighter pilot harassed a US B-52 over the South China Sea

The Pentagon announced Thursday that a Chinese fighter jet carried out an “unsafe interception” of a US B-52 aircraft over the South China Sea earlier this week. The Ministry of Defense published a video of the confrontation that took place on Tuesday night.

According to the Pentagon. The 38-second video appears The pilot of a Shenyang J-11 approaches within 10 feet of a B-52, a long-range heavy bomber.

The Pentagon said the Chinese pilot “flew in an unsafe and unprofessional manner” and “demonstrated poor flying as he approached at excessive, uncontrollable speed.”

The Pentagon expressed “concern” that the Chinese fighter pilot “was not aware of how close he came to causing the collision.”

Video of a Chinese J-11 fighter jet approaching a US B-52 over the South China Sea. October 24, 2023.

Pentagon


The Pentagon stated that the B-52 was conducting routine night operations when the encounter occurred, and visibility was limited. Moreover, the interception of the Chinese fighter plane “violates international rules and norms for air safety.”

Since the fall of 2021, the Chinese military has initiated more than 180 similar interactions with aircraft from the US military and other countries, according to Pentagon.

In one such incident, which occurred on May 26, also over the South China Sea, the pilot of a Chinese J-16 fighter He flew straight ahead Introduction of an American RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft. The US Indo-Pacific Command reported that the two planes came within 400 feet of each other, and the RC-135 was forced to fly through turbulence caused by the J-16.

“There have been a series of these actions directed not only against us, but against other countries in recent months,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said at the time.

There were also confrontations at sea. In June, a Chinese naval ship blocked the route across the road of a US Navy missile destroyer in the Taiwan Strait, with the two ships approaching within 150 yards.

China He often conducts exercises In the Taiwan Strait. It considers Taiwan, an island located just off its eastern coast that has been under democratic rule for seven decades, as part of its sovereign territory.

Eleanor Watson and Elizabeth Palmer contributed to this report.

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