Washington, Oct 26 (EFE) – The United States Command in the Indo-Pacific denounced on Thursday a new “dangerous maneuver” by Chinese aviation, after a Chinese J11 fighter jet “almost collided” with a US B-52 bomber.
The incident occurred on Tuesday when the Chinese pilot made the maneuver while the B-52 was conducting “lawful routine operations over the South China Sea in international airspace.”
The Chinese pilot “demonstrated poor airmanship” in his J-11 jet, flying within 10 feet of the B-52 bomber “at uncontrolled excessive speed,” putting both aircraft in danger of colliding, according to US officials.
“We are concerned that this pilot was unaware of how close he came to causing a collision,” the statement added.
The event occurred at night, with limited visibility, and the command said it violated international air safety rules and regulations.
Regulations require military aircraft to operate with “professional aeronautical skill” and “due regard for the safety of other aircraft” when intentionally approaching another plane.
According to the Indo-Pacific Command, Tuesday’s close encounter is the latest in a series of more than 180 “unsafe, unprofessional, and other behaviors that seek to impinge upon the ability of the United States and other nations to safely conduct operations” since the fall of 2021.
Last week, the Pentagon released videos and descriptions of 15 recent cases of what it called “intimidating and dangerous operational behavior” by China’s People’s Liberation Army toward US aircraft, although none of them involved Chinese warplanes harassing US bombers. EFE