- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Russia has once against buzzed U.S. military aircraft operating over the Black Sea.

The Russian Su-27 jet flew within 10 feet of a U.S. Navy P-8 Poseidon reconnaissance aircraft Wednesday, the latest in a long string of provocations by Moscow in the region, including when an Su-27 streaked by the guided-missile destroyer USS Ross in June 2015.

“We have concerns when there is an unsafe maneuver like this. These actions have the potential to unnecessarily escalate tensions, and could result in a miscalculation or accident,” Navy Capt. Jeff A. Davis told reporters, Fox News reported.

The officer called the confrontation a “close-range intercept” over international airspace.

Another official who was not authorized to speak publicly told Reuters there were multiple “interactions” with Russian aircraft over the course of 12 hours, but that only one was determined “unsafe.”

Russia’s move comes as diplomats from both countries continue to work on a deal that will end Syria’s ongoing civil war.

“We don’t want to have a deal for the sake of the deal,” Secretary of State John Kerry said Aug. 27 after meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavro in Geneva. “We want to have something done that is effective and that works for the people of Syria, that makes the region more stable and secure, and that brings us to the table here in Geneva to find a political solution.”

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