WASHINGTON — U.S. and Russian aircraft operating in the Mediterranean Sea flew dangerously close to each other in three separate incidents over the weekend, including one in which the two nations’ aircraft came within 5 feet of each other, U.S. defense officials said.
The incidents, which occurred in international airspace Friday and Saturday, involved three Russian Su-35 jet fighters crossing into the flight path of three U.S. P-8A surveillance aircraft, the officials said. They came amid heightened tensions between the U.S. and Russia over Ukraine.
The Pentagon assessed two of the interactions as unsafe and the third as unprofessional, the officials said. The incidents marked the first such interactions between Russian and U.S. aircraft since 2020, the officials said.
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