Russian MoD decorated Su-27 Pilots who intercepted US MQ-9 drone
The Russian Ministry of Defense announced today that the pilots who intercepted the US drone over the Black Sea were decorated with an Order of Courage.
The Russian Ministry of Defense announced today that the pilots who intercepted the US drone over the Black Sea were decorated with an Order of Courage by minister Sergei Shoigu.
"The Orders of Courage were awarded to the pilots of Su-27 aircraft who prevented the violation by the US unmanned aerial vehicle MQ-9 of the borders of the temporary regime for the use of airspace established for the purpose of conducting the special military operation," the statement said.
🇷🇺✈️🇺🇸🛬🌊Shoigu awarded Orders of courage to pilots who prevented the violation of the borders of the Special Military Operation area by the US MQ-9 drone pic.twitter.com/w6OAhnllMP— AZ 🛰🌏🌍🌎 (@AZgeopolitics) March 22, 2023
Read more: US Reaper crashes into Black Sea after 'incident' with Russian Su-27
Last week, the US European Command claimed that a Russian Su-27 fighter jet dumped fuel on an American MQ-9 drone over the Black Sea and then collided with it, causing the drone to crash.
The US European Command statement read "a Russian Su-27 aircraft struck the propeller of a U.S. MQ-9 drone, causing U.S. forces to have to bring the MQ-9 down in international waters."
The Command claimed that "several times before the collision, the Su-27s dumped fuel on and flew in front of the MQ-9 in a reckless, environmentally unsound, and unprofessional manner."
Read more: Russia denies downing US Reaper, Pentagon declines disclosing if armed
The Russian Defense Ministry denied US allegations and said the fighter jets sent to intercept it did not come into contact with the US MQ-9 drone nor did they use weapons against it, pointing out that the drone crashed due to "sharp maneuvering".
The Ministry clarified that the airspace control of the Russian Aerospace Forces had recorded the flight of the US unmanned aerial vehicle MQ-9 over the Black Sea in the region of the Crimean peninsula in the direction of the Russian state border.
The flight of the drone "was carried out with transponders turned off, violating the boundaries of the area of the temporary regime for the use of airspace, established for the purpose of conducting a special military operation, communicated to all users of international airspace and published in accordance with international standards," the MoD statement read.
The Pentagon claimed that the US military was forced to crash its MQ-9 Reaper surveillance drone because of the damage caused when it was allegedly struck by a Russian jet.
Read more: US is constantly trying to escalate: Lavrov
Lavrov assessed the drone incident to be a provocation criticizing the US's disregard for the flight restrictions over the Black Sea coastline regions which were implemented since the start of the war in Ukraine.
Today Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov warned that the United States' intentions to continue flying drones over the Black Sea will prompt retaliation from Moscow.
Ryabkov said that "it is not the depths at which the wreckage of the drone is located that is important, but that it was in the zone where we introduced a special regime related to the conduct of the military operation," stressing that the Americans defiantly, cynically, clearly, and publicly denied the legality of such steps, and declared their intention to continue their activities.
Read more: Russia to retaliate if US keeps flying drones over Black Sea: Moscow