The UK Ministry of Defense said a Russian fighter jet fired a missile at a British RC-135 Rivet Joint military aircraft during its patrol over the Black Sea on September 29. UK Defense Secretary Ben Wallace explained that he had discussed the incident with his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu. The Russian side reported a technical malfunction of its fighter, saying that the missile was fired by mistake.
According to Mr. Wallace, on September 29, an unarmed RC-135 River Joint reconnaissance aircraft was on a routine patrol over the Black Sea when it was intercepted by two combat Russian Su-27 fighters.
“It is not unusual for an aircraft to be followed. It was an ordinary day. However, during the interception, one of the Su-27 fighters fired a missile near the RC-135 River Joint aircraft without visual contact with the target, ”Wallace said (quoted by The Telegraph). He noted that in total the incident lasted 19 minutes. The patrol was completed and the British aircraft returned to their base.
“In light of this potentially dangerous encounter, I communicated my concerns directly to my Russian counterpart, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, and Chief of the General Staff (Russian Armed Forces Valery Gerasimov.— “uh”) in Moscow,” said the head of the British Ministry of Defense. In his letter, he pointed out that the plane was unarmed, was in international airspace and followed a pre-announced route.
Head Wallace added that patrols over the Black Sea were stopped until a response from the Russian side on October 10 was received. “The response of the Russian Defense Minister dated October 10 says that an investigation into the circumstances of the incident has been carried out and a technical malfunction of the Su-27 fighter has been ascertained,” the British minister said.