What Are Other Black Sea Incidents With US Drones?

© Sputnik / Vasily Batanov / Go to the mediabankSmall missile ship Mirazh of the Russian Black Sea Fleet
Small missile ship Mirazh of the Russian Black Sea Fleet - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.03.2023
Russia's Defense Ministry has stressed that a US unmanned aerial vehicle fell into the Black Sea earlier this week due to its own sharp maneuvering rather than any impact with a Russian warplane.
Moscow has rejected western media reports that a Russian Su-27 interceptor aircraft collided with a US MQ-9 Reaper drone over the Black Sea on Tuesday, allegedly sending the UAV into a tailspin and a crash.
A RAF Reaper UAV - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.03.2023
What Was US Doing Flying a Combat Drone Off Russia's Coast?
The Russian Defense Ministry stated that the drone crashed because of its own extreme maneuvers and that no physical interaction ever happened. Now it’s quite logical to wonder if there were any other incidents over the Black Sea involving US unmanned aerial vehicles. Sputnik explores.

Protracted Flight

On February 7, the flight tracking portal Flightradar indicated that the US drone RQ-4B Global Hawk with the call sign FORTE11 was flying over the Black Sea.
According to media reports, the UAV made a surveillance flight for at least 14 hours along the coasts of Crimea and Kuban regions in southern Russia.

Sevastopol Attack

The Global Hawk incident came after Russia’s Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said on November 23, 2022, that Russian air defense systems had shot down five unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) near gas condensate fields in the Black Sea and near the city of Sevastopol.
Also on that day, Flightradar spotted the flyover of the US drone RQ-4 Global Hawk near the Crimean peninsula.

Attempt to Strike Crimean Thermal Plant

On November 22, 2022, Sevastopol Governor Mikhail Razvozhayev said that Russian air defenses shot down two drones over the Black Sea as they tried to approach the Balaklava thermal power plant.
According to Razvozhayev, the incident caused no fire and damage to civilian infrastructure. Also that month, a UAV was downed over Sevastopol’s water zone as the drone conducted a surveillance flight.

Minor Damage

October 29, 2022, saw Black Sea Fleet warships destroy several UAVs in the waters of Sevastopol, with authorities noting that there was no damage in the city except cracked glass in the dormitory of the Sevastopol Professional Art College.

Chersoneses Cusp Downing

In late August of that year, Razvozhayev reported the downing of an unmanned aerial vehicle over the Black Sea near Chersoneses Cusp located in Sevastopol’s western area.
In a separate development earlier that month, the Sevastopol governor praised the Russian air defense system’s successful destruction of another drone over the sea.
Even though there was no word on whether the downed drones mentioned in several above-mentioned incidents belonged to the US military, it's possible to assume that these were American UAVs given that the past few years have seen an increase in flights by USAF spy planes in the Black Sea and near Crimea.
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