Russian fighter jet provokes US Navy Destroyer in Black Sea – see note from FNC’s Justin Fishel


Note below from Justin:

On Saturday April 12 at roughly 1000 EDT/1700 local a Russian Su-24 fighter jet (Fencer) made numerous close-range, low-altitude passes over the USS Donald Cook guided missile destroyer in the western Black Sea, the Pentagon announced Monday.


Pentagon spokesman Col. Steve Warren called the fly-overs “provocative and unprofessional.”


The fighter jet made a total of 12 passes over the course of 90 minutes and did not once respond to multiple contacts and warnings from the Donald Cook, despite the fact that the US Navy ship was able to reach the cockpit directly.


The Pentagon says the fighter jet had no visible missiles attached to its wings and that the incident ended without any exchange of fire.


“This provocative and unprofessional Russian action is inconsistent with international protocols and previous agreements of a professional interaction between our militaries,” Warren said.


The jet’s altitude varied at times from “virtual sea level to several thousand feet,” Warren said. The jet did not “buzz” the Cook, but “flew too close.”


A second Russian Su-24 fighter was in the area the entire time, but did not make any similarly provocative maneuvers.


The Pentagon says there has been no official communication with the Russians since the incident and that a formal protest has yet to be filed.


It’s not unusual for US Navy ships to operate in the Black Sea. The Donald Cook moved into the region last week for what the Navy called “routine operations,” although the deployment is seen mostly as a symbolic response to tensions along the Ukrainian, Russian border.


Incident occurred on Saturday April 12 at 1400 Zulu time (+4)


Justin Fishel

Fox News Channel

Pentagon /State Dept. Producer