January 28, 2023

The US military said a Chinese aircraft came within 20 feet of US military aircraft

US officials said Thursday that a Chinese pilot “made an unsafe maneuver” while close to a US Air Force plane.

US Command in the Indo-Pacific Region he said in a statement The fighter pilot flew in front of and within 20 feet of the nose of the RC-135 that the American pilot was flying on December 21, 2022.

The command said the American pilot was flying legally over the South China Sea, but had to “perform evasive maneuvers” to avoid collision. None of the pilots have been identified.

“The Indo-Pacific Joint Force is dedicated to a free and open Indo-Pacific and will continue to fly, sail and operate in the sea and international airspace with due consideration for the safety of all ships and aircraft under international law,” the officials said. “We expect all countries in the Indo-Pacific region to use international airspace safely and in accordance with international law,” he added.

Video of the accident The command is shared, and the brief clip shows the Chinese plane approaching the American plane before the pilot begins evasive maneuvers.