No interceptor touched the American spy UAV that was approaching Crimea, Moscow has said
An MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft (RPA). © Isaac Brekken/Getty Images
The Russian Defense Ministry on Tuesday denied claims by the US military that a Russian interceptor came into contact with the American MQ-9 drone over the Black Sea, causing it to crash.
The UAV was flying towards the Russian border without a transponder active, in clear violation of the restricted area established for the conduct of the special military operation, the ministry said. Two interceptors were dispatched to investigate.
“As a result of sharp maneuvers around 9:30am Moscow time, the MQ-9 unmanned aerial vehicle went into uncontrolled flight, lost altitude, and collided with the water surface. The Russian fighters did not use weapons, did not come into contact with the UAV, and returned safely to their home base,” the defense ministry said in a statement.